From Biology-Online Dictionary | Biology-Online Dictionary


1. To cleanse, clear, or purify by separating and carrying off whatever is impure, heterogeneous, foreign, or superfluous. Till fire purge all things new.

2. (Science: medicine) To operate on as, or by means of, a cathartic medicine, or in a similar manner.

3. To clarify; to defecate, as liquors.

4. To clear of sediment, as a boiler, or of air, as a steam pipe, by driving off or permitting escape.

5. To clear from guilt, or from moral or ceremonial defilement; as, to purge one of guilt or crime. When that he hath purged you from sin. (Chaucer) Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean. (Ps. Li. 7)

6. To clear from accusation, or the charge of a crime or misdemeanor, as by oath or in ordeal.

7. To remove in cleansing; to deterge; to wash away; often followed by away. Purge away our sins, for thy name's sake. (Ps. Lxxix. 9) We 'll join our cares to purge away Our country's crimes. (Addison)

Origin: F. Purger, L. Purgare; purus pure _ agere to make, to do. See Pure, and Agent.

1. The act of purging. The preparative for the purge of paganism of the kingdom of Northumberland. (Fuller)

2. That which purges; especially, a medicine that evacuates the intestines; a cathartic.

Origin: Cf. F. Purge. See Purge.