• The job that's never ended--Cleaning up for inspection
    The job that's never ended--Cleaning up for inspection
  • WordNet 3.6
    • adj cleanly habitually clean "cleanly in their persons and habitations"
    • adv cleanly in an adroit manner "he bounced it cleanly off the wall"
    • adv cleanly without difficulty or distortion "she played the piano accompaniment cleanly"
    • adv cleanly in a manner that minimizes dirt and pollution "the motor burns cleanly"
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

The Spring-Cleaning (Indemnity) Bill The Spring-Cleaning (Indemnity) Bill
Smith Premier with cleaning brace Smith Premier with cleaning brace

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: A giraffe is able to clean its ears with its own tongue
    • Cleanly Adroit; skillful; dexterous; artful. "Through his fine handling and his cleanly play."
    • Cleanly Adroitly; dexterously.
    • Cleanly Cleansing; fitted to remove moisture; dirt, etc. "With cleanly powder dry their hair."
    • Cleanly Habitually clean; pure; innocent. "Cleanly joys.""Some plain but cleanly country maid.""Displays her cleanly platter on the board."
    • Cleanly In a clean manner; neatly. "He was very cleanly dressed."
    • Cleanly Innocently; without stain.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: Kissing can aid in reducing tooth decay. This is because the extra saliva helps in keeping the mouth clean
    • cleanly Free from dirt or any foul matter; personally neat; careful to keep or make clean.
    • cleanly Free from injurious or polluting influence; pure; innocent: as, “cleanly joys,”
    • cleanly Cleansing; making clean.
    • cleanly Dexterous; adroit; clever; artful.
    • cleanly Neat; trim; well-shaped. Compare clean, a., 9.
    • cleanly Entirely; wholly; completely.
    • cleanly In a clean manner; neatly; without soil or uncleanness.
    • cleanly Decently; morally; with freedom from vice or impurity.
    • cleanly Cleverly; adroitly; dexterously.
    • cleanly Clearly; unmistakably.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: In the 1920's, Q-Tips were invented by Leo Gerstenzang who got the idea after watching his wife clean their baby's ears with cotton stuck onto a toothpick.
    • adj Cleanly clean in habits or person: pure: neat
    • ***


  • Oscar Wilde
    “The amount of women in London who flirt with their own husbands is perfectly scandalous. It looks so bad. It is simply washing one's clean linen in public.”
  • Mae West
    “It's hard to be funny when you have to be clean.”
  • Benjamin Franklin
    “Clean your finger before you point at my spots.”
  • Puzant Kevork Thomajan
    Puzant Kevork Thomajan
    “A hearty laugh gives one a dry cleaning, while a good cry is a wet wash.”
  • Henry Ward Beecher
    “Laws and institutions, like clocks, must occasionally be cleaned, wound up, and set to true time.”
  • William Shakespeare
    “Your lordship, though not clean past your youth, have yet some smack of age in you, some relish of the saltiness of time.”


Clean as a whistle - If something is as clean as a whistle, it is extremely clean, spotless. It can also be used to mean 'completely', though this meaning is less common nowadays. If somebody is clean as a whistle, they are not involved in anything illegal.
Clean bill of health - If something or someone has a clean bill of health, then there's nothing wrong; everything's fine.
Clean break - If you make a clean break, you break away completely from something.
Clean hands - Someone with clean hands, or who keeps their hands clean, is not involved in illegal or immoral activities.
Clean sheet - When someone has a clean sheet, they have got no criminal record or problems affecting their reputation. In football and other sports, a goalkeeper has a clean sheet when let no goals in.
Clean slate - If you start something with a clean slate, then nothing bad from your past is taken into account.
Clean sweep - If someone makes a clean sweep, they win absolutely everything in a competition or contest.
Clean your clock - If you clean your clock, you beat someone decisively in a contest or fight.
Come clean - If someone comes clean about something, they admit to deceit or wrongdoing.
Keep your nose clean - If someone is trying to keep their Nose Clean, they are trying to stay out of trouble by not getting involved in any sort of wrong-doing.
Make a clean breast - If someone makes a clean breast, they confess in full to something they have done.
New brush sweeps clean - 'A new brush sweeps clean' means that someone with a new perspective can make great changes. However, the full version is 'a new brush sweeps clean, but an old brush knows the corners', which warns that experience is also a valuable thing. Sometimes 'broom' is used instead of 'brush'.
Show someone a clean pair of heels - If you show someone a clean pair of heels, you run faster than them when they are chasing you.
Squeaky clean - If something is squeaky clean, it is very clean indeed- spotless. If a person is squeaky clean, they have no criminal record and are not suspected of illegal or immoral activities.


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
From Clean
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A.S. clǽne; W., Gael. glan, shine, polish; Ger. klein, small.


In literature:

Better, perhaps, is the use of trays covered with clean, stout manilla paper upon which thin layers of the leaves are spread.
"Culinary Herbs: Their Cultivation Harvesting Curing and Uses" by M. G. Kains
When cleaning the mouth care must be observed not to injure the tender mucous membrane.
"The Eugenic Marriage, Volume IV. (of IV.)" by Grant Hague
Every thing was cleaned up jes' 'fore de meetin' like us did fer de early-spring cleanin'.
"Slave Narratives Vol. XIV. South Carolina, Part 2" by Works Projects Administration
The place is not particularly clean and certainly hot, dusty and most unattractive.
"Across Coveted Lands" by Arnold Henry Savage Landor
The man whirled through the air, passed clean over the launch, struck the water beyond and disappeared from view.
"Frank Merriwell's Cruise" by Burt L. Standish
And she talked to him too about a motherless young manhood and how he must try to keep clean and straight.
"The Forbidden Trail" by Honoré Willsie
Fluids for Cleaning Clothes, Furniture, etc.
"Practical Mechanics for Boys" by J. S. Zerbe
Great care must be taken of the trees themselves and of the soil around the trees, which must be kept clean and absolutely free from grass.
"Across Unknown South America" by Arnold Henry Savage Landor
How charming, clean, and neat are those little Swedish towns!
"The Land of the Long Night" by Paul du Chaillu
When the glass is very clean interference colours will be noticed as the water dries away.
"On Laboratory Arts" by Richard Threlfall

In poetry:

All may of thee partake:
Nothing can be so mean,
Which with his tincture (for thy sake)
Will not grow bright and clean.
"The Elixir" by George Herbert
There I spy a dusty streak!
There a corner not quite clean!
There a cobweb! There the sneak
Of a spider, watching keen!
"Cottage-Songs" by George MacDonald
Uncle Sidney's vurry proud
Of little Leslie-Janey,
'Cause she's so smart, an' goes to school
Clean 'way in Pennsylvany!
"A Session With Uncle Sidney" by James Whitcomb Riley
Water, sun, and windy air
Make the clothes clean, white, and sweet
Lay them now in lavender
For the Sunday, folded neat!
"Cottage-Songs" by George MacDonald
Blest are the undefiled in heart,
Whose ways are right and clean;
Who never from thy law depart,
But fly from every sin.
"Psalm 119 part 1" by Isaac Watts
This raiment never waxes old,
'Tis always new and clean:
From summer-heat, and winter-cold,
Thy Husband can thee screen.
"The Believer's Jointure : Chapter I." by Ralph Erskine

In news:

He is known as one of the original members of 'Democrats Green' which included politicians involved in issues such as clean air, clean water and global warming.
The new company will operate as Gamajet Cleaning Systems and will remain in Exton PA. Home » Fleet Equipment » Gamajet Cleaning Systems acquired by Alfa Laval.
Dayton City Commissioners voted Wednesday morning to approve the $3 million dollar grant from the Clean Ohio Revitalization Fund to clean up the old Delphi plant on Home Avenue .
Now that the weather is getting nicer, many people clean out closets and do some Spring cleaning.
They clean their glasses more often, and they clean them correctly, with soft soap, water and a soft cloth.
US 'cleaning fairy' who broke into home, cleaned it and left $75 bill gets year of probation.
Equipment Clean Beach Technologies has designed to help clean the contaminated oil from the beaches in the Gulf of Mexico.
Sun, closed Full Service Dry Cleaning : Alterations, Dry cleaning , Ironing, Leather cleaning , Washing.
Americans aren't used to the idea of steam cleaning , but Europeans have been steam cleaning their homes for years.
"We realize you can get dry cleaning everywhere else," Schoonover said, "but you can only get Tide cleaning here.".
"We've worked hard to change the way dry cleaning is done," said Chuck Schoonover, Atlanta general manager for Tide's dry clean franchises.
Check out the recommendations on the American Cleaning Institute's website for the safest way to dispose of cleaning products.
Prine Cleaners opened in the 1930s providing retail dry cleaning and rug cleaning .
North America's largest alternative fuel and clean vehicle technologies conference moves to the US capital for 2013 to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the US Department of Energy's Clean Cities program.
"A lot of times these murals have been very difficult to clean but this one seems much easier to clean than some we've had.".

In science:

In this case the Lagrangians in the quotient ¯L and φ1 In particular, they do not intersect transversally but still cleanly, i.e. there intersection is still a manifold whose tangent space is given by the intersection of the two tangent spaces.
The Arnold-Givental conjecture and moment Floer homology
Fig. 12.— The observed spectrum of a region ∼ 1.′′3 east of the nucleus (a relatively clean observation of the underlying elliptical) is shown in black at the top.
The Aligned z ~ 1 Radio Galaxy 3C 280
We expect the disorders may transform the linear behavior V ∼ d − dc1 in clean case to the parabolic one h2 z ∼ d − dc1 in the dirty case.
Mutual Composite Fermion and composite Boson approaches to balanced and imbalanced bilayer quantum Hall system: an electronic analogy of the Helium 4 system
In B13C2 a metallic phase could be achieved either by obtaining clean samples or by applying a small pressure.
Superconductivity from doping boron icosahedra
For the parallel wires, some theoretical works have been done concerning the temperature and electron reservoir dependence of transresistance, transconductance and transsusceptibility for clean wires as well as wires with periodic potentials [6-8].
Electron transport in parallel quantum wires with random potentials