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purify

[pyoo r-uh-fahy] /ˈpyʊər əˌfaɪ/
verb (used with object), purified, purifying.
1.
to make pure; free from anything that debases, pollutes, adulterates, or contaminates:
to purify metals.
2.
to free from foreign, extraneous, or objectionable elements:
to purify a language.
3.
to free from guilt or evil.
4.
to clear or purge (usually followed by of or from).
5.
to make clean for ceremonial or ritual use.
verb (used without object), purified, purifying.
6.
to become pure.
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English purifien < Middle French purifier < Latin pūrificāre. See pure, -ify
Related forms
purification, noun
purificatory
[pyoo-rif-i-kuh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] /pyʊˈrɪf ɪ kəˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i/ (Show IPA),
adjective
purifier, noun
nonpurification, noun
nonpurifying, adjective
repurification, noun
repurify, verb, repurified, repurifying.
self-purifying, adjective
unpurified, adjective
unpurifying, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for purification
  • Paradoxically, animal blood can be used as a cleansing agent in some ritual purification processes.
  • On offer is bare-board living: fasting, yoga, meditation and-the ultimate in purification-twice daily cleansing of the colon.
  • When this purification has been completed, but not before, the people are free to eat of the new crops.
  • From the day on which the emancipation of our literature was accomplished, the purification of our literature began.
  • Officials blamed their inability to keep the water-purification and pumping stations going for the electricity shortages.
  • The organization is trying to mobilize food and set up a place to bring in water purification tablets.
  • One of its primary uses is water purification so everywhere that there is water production, there is chlorine.
  • Ritual purification at the command of a heroic leader is an ancient and powerful tradition in this part of the world.
  • Homeowners should set up a water purification system if they do plan to use rainwater for interior needs.
  • Rice offers several advantages over traditional vaccines: it does not require needles, purification or refrigeration.
British Dictionary definitions for purification

purify

/ˈpjʊərɪˌfaɪ/
verb -fies, -fying, -fied
1.
to free (something) of extraneous, contaminating, or debasing matter
2.
(transitive) to free (a person, etc) from sin or guilt
3.
(transitive) to make clean, as in a ritual, esp the churching of women after childbirth
Derived Forms
purification, noun
purificatory (ˈpjʊərɪfɪˌkeɪtərɪ) adjective
Word Origin
C14: from Old French purifier, from Late Latin pūrificāre to cleanse, from pūrus pure + facere to make
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for purification
n.

late 14c., originally especially in reference to Feast of the Purification of the Virgin Mary, from Old French purificacion, from Latin purificationem (nominative purificatio) "a purifying," noun of action from past participle stem of purificare (see purify). General sense from 1590s.

purify

v.

early 14c., "free from spiritual pollution," from Old French purefier "purify, cleanse, refine" (12c.), from Latin purificare "to make pure," from purus "pure" (see pure) + root of facere "to make" (see factitious). Meaning "free from extraneous matter" is recorded from mid-15c. Related: Purified; purifying.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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purification in the Bible

the process by which a person unclean, according to the Levitical law, and thereby cut off from the sanctuary and the festivals, was restored to the enjoyment of all these privileges. The great annual purification of the people was on the Day of Atonement (q.v.). But in the details of daily life there were special causes of cermonial uncleanness which were severally provided for by ceremonial laws enacted for each separate case. For example, the case of the leper (Lev. 13, 14), and of the house defiled by leprosy (14:49-53; see also Matt. 8:2-4). Uncleanness from touching a dead body (Num. 19:11; Hos. 9:4; Hag. 2:13; Matt. 23:27; Luke 11:44). The case of the high priest and of the Nazarite (Lev. 21:1-4, 10, 11; Num. 6:6, 7; Ezek. 44:25). Purification was effected by bathing and washing the clothes (Lev. 14:8, 9); by washing the hands (Deut. 21:6; Matt. 27:24); washing the hands and feet (Ex. 30:18-21; Heb. 6:2, "baptisms", R.V. marg., "washings;" 9:10); sprinkling with blood and water (Ex. 24:5-8; Heb. 9:19), etc. Allusions to this rite are found in Ps. 26:6; 51:7; Ezek. 36:25; Heb. 10:22.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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Encyclopedia Article for purification

in chemistry, separation of a substance into its components and the removal of impurities. There are a large number of important applications in fields such as medicine and manufacturing.

Learn more about purification with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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