late Old English clænsunge "a cleansing, a purifying, castigation; chastity, purity," verbal noun from the root of cleanse. As a present-participle adjective, attested from c. 1300.
1610s, of medicines, "purgative, purifying," from Latin catharticus, from Greek kathartikos "fit for cleansing, purgative," from katharsis "purging, cleansing" (see catharsis). General sense is from 1670s. Related: Cathartical.
"detergent substance," 1670s, from detergent (adj.). Originally a medical term; application to "chemical cleansing product" is by 1932.
late 14c., purgacioun, "purification from sin," also "discharge of waste; evacuation of evil humors by bloodletting, etc.," from Old French purgacion "a cleansing," medical or spiritual (12c., Modern French purgation) and directly from Latin purgationem (nominative purgatio) "a cleansing, purging," figuratively "an apology, justification," noun of action from past-participle stem of purgare "to cleanse, purify" (see purge (v.)).
"breed of heavy draught horses," 1786, so called because they were bred in the valley of the Clyde in Scotland. The river name is perhaps literally "cleansing," from a Celtic root akin to Latin cloaca (see cloaca).
"cleansing, purging," 1610s, from Latin detergentem (nominative detergens), present participle of detergere "to wipe away, cleanse," from de "off, away" (see de-) + tergere "to rub, polish, wipe," which is of uncertain origin. Originally a medical term.
"act of washing, a cleansing," 1620s, from Latin lavationem (nominative lavatio) "a bathing, bath, bathing apparatus," noun of action from past-participle stem of lavare "to wash" (from PIE root *leue- "to wash"). Related: Lavations.