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Denotation vs. Connotation

unwashed

[uhn-wosht, -wawsht] /ʌnˈwɒʃt, -ˈwɔʃt/
adjective
1.
not cleaned or purified by or as if by washing:
unwashed dishes; the unwashed soul of a sinner.
2.
pertaining to or characteristic of the common people; untutored, unsophisticated, or ignorant; plebeian:
the power of the unwashed electorate.
noun
3.
(used with a plural verb) an ignorant or lower-class group; rabble (usually preceded by the):
The author claimed that the unwashed would not understand his books.
Origin of unwashed
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English; see un-1, washed
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for unwashed
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Presently his eyes coming to themselves, confirmed the fact that he was in the midst of a notable number of the unwashed.

    Weighed and Wanting George MacDonald
  • unwashed and unshaven, he saunters moodily about, weary and dejected.

    Sunday under Three Heads Charles Dickens
  • The man or youth—Tom could not guess which—writhed his way across the unwashed floor and halted at the table.

    With Wellington in Spain F. S. Brereton
  • The man was unwashed and unfed, and for many nights he had not slept.

    Murder Point Coningsby Dawson
  • Attend carefully: 'And let all the priests alone eat the inwards, unwashed with vinegar.'

    Frauds and Follies of the Fathers Joseph Mazzini Wheeler
British Dictionary definitions for unwashed

unwashed

/ʌnˈwɒʃt/
adjective
1.
not washed
plural noun
2.
(jocular, derogatory) the great unwashed, the masses
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 unwashed
adj.

late 14c., from un- (1) "not" + past participle of wash (v.). Noun sense of "the lower class" is attested from 1830.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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