• Wash-ball


    • UK IPA: /ˈwɒʃˌbɔːl/
    • US IPA: /ˈwɔʃˌbɔl/, /ˈwɑʃˌbɔl/
    • Hyphenation: wash + ball

    Alternative forms


    wash + ball.

    Full definition of wash-ball



    (plural wash-balls)
    1. (archaic) A ball or cake of substance used for bathing or personal cleansing, or to produce a lather for shaving; a ball of soap.
      • 1662, Christopher Wase, Dictionarium minus: A Compendious Dictionary English–Latin & Latin–English: Wherein the Classical Words of both Languages are Aptly Rendered ...: Also, the Received Names of Herbs, Plants &c. are Largely Inserted, Divers Proverbs Explain'd, and many Antiquities Illustrated, Magmata, um. The dregs of ointment, waſh-balls.
      • 1693, Age Renewed by Wedlock; or, The Old Womans Commendations of Her Young Husband [w, My Husband is a barber
      • 1721, William Gibson, The Farriers Dispensatory: In Three Parts, Take Powder of fenugreek
      • 1729, Thomas d'Urfey, The Comical History of Don Quixote. As it was Acted at the w, But that I know how I am perſecuted, I ſhould have ſworn this was my very Neighbour, that oft with Razor keen and lathering Waſh-ball mow'd the rough Stubble from my dented Chin, and ſnapp'd his fingers with acute Agility.
      • 1731, Henry Jones, w, That which gave me the firſt Suſpicion, that the chalybeate
      • 1743, Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, w, There came in four Damſels, ... the fourth with her Sleeves tuck'd above her Elbows, held in her Lilly-white Hand (for exceeding white it was) a large Waſh-ball of Naples-Soap. ... the Damſel that brought the Waſh-ball fell to Work, and belather'd his Beard ſo effectually, that the Suds, like huge Flakes of Snow, flew all over the paſſive Knight's face; inſomuch, that he was forc'd to ſhut his Eyes.
      • 1749, Alain-René Lesage; Tobias Smollett, transl., Gil Blas, London: J. Osborn, OCLC 779187431; republished as The Adventures of Gil Blas de Santillane. Translated from the French of Le Sage by Tobias Smollett, M.D. ... In Three Volumes, volume I, London: Printed for Thomas M'Lean al., 1819, OCLC 697631796, page 163:... I don't trouble myself with clothes, linen, and other useless baggage; but resolving to have nothing superfluous, fill my knapsack with belly-timber, my razors, and a wash-ball.
      • 1750, Francis Moore, Vox Stellarum: Or, A Loyal Almanack for the Year of Human Redemption, 1750. ..., The uncommon Succeſs above Forty Years laſt paſt of the ſo-much famed and only true Original Royal Chymical Wash Ball, For beautifying the Face, Neck and Hands, hath induced many envious Perſons, not only in every part of London, but in many Places in the Country, to ſell a counterfeit white Ball (which may prove prejudicial as well as inaffectual) in imitation of the true ones. ... wash-balls are ſtill more than ever uſed and admir'd by both Sexes of the beſt Quality, and many thouſands of Gentry and others, for making the Skin ſo delicately ſoft and ſmooth as not to be parallel'd by any Waſh or Waſh-Ball, &c. of any Kind or Form; ...
      • 1751, Alexander Pope, The Works of Alexander Pope Esq. Volume VI. Containing His Miscellaneous Pieces in Verse and Prose Chapter Memoirs of P. P. Clerk of this Parish, There paſſed among men a mercenary tale delectable enough to be rehearſed: How that being overtaken with liquor one Saturday evening, I ſhav'd the Prieſt with Spaniſh blacking for ſhoes inſtead of a waſhball, and with lampblack powdered his perriwig. But theſe were ſayings of men, delighting in their own conceits more than in the truth.
      • 1755, Jonathan Swift, The Works of Jonathan Swift, D. D. Dean of w Chapter Thoughts on Various Subjects, I aſked a poor man how he did? He ſaid, he was like a waſh-ball, always in decay.
      • 1777, Susanna Centlivre, The Wonder! A Woman Keeps a Secret, a Comedy, written by Mrs. Centlivre. Marked with the Variations of the Manager's Book, at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, London: Printed for W. Lowndes, S. Bladon, and W. Nicoll, OCLC 24861717; reprinted in The New English Theatre. Vol. XI. Confederacy, Minor, Country Wife, Chances, Wonder, London: Printed for J. Rivington & Sons, J. Dodsley. T. Lowndes, T. Caslon, W. Nicoll, S. Bladon, &c., 1777, OCLC 723029323, Act II, page 16:Violante. Why, ſure you are in love Liſſardo; did not you ſay, but now, you had balls where you have been?
        Liſſardo. Balls, madam! Odſlife, I aſk your pardon, madam! I, I, I, had miſlaid ſome waſh-balls of my maſter's, t'other day; and becauſe I could not think where I had lain them, juſt when he aſkt for them, he very fairly broke my head, madam, and now, it ſeems, I can think of nothing elſe.
      • 1784, Pierre-Joseph Buc'hoz, The Toilet of Flora: Or, a Collection of the most Simple and Approved Methods of Preparing Baths, Essences, Pomatums, Powders, Perfumes, and Sweet-Scented Waters. With Receipts for Cosmetics of every Kind, that can Smooth and Brighten the Skin, give Force to Beauty, and Take Off the Appearance of Old Age and Decay. For the Use of the Ladies, 251. A Waſh-ball, an excellent Coſmetic for the Face and Hands. Take a pound of Florentine Orrice, a quarter of a pound of Storax, two ounces of Yellow Sanders, half an ounce of Cloves, as much fine Cinnamon, a Nutmeg, and twelve grains of Ambergriſe; beat the whole into very fine powder and ſift them through a lawn ſieve; all except the Ambergriſe, which is to be added afterwards. ... Of this Paſte make Waſh-balls; dry them in the ſhade, and poliſh them with a Paſteboard or lignum vitae
      • 1784, Hannah Glasse, w, To make Red, Light, or Purple Waſh-Balls. Get ſome white-ſoap, beat it in a mortar; then put it into a pan, and cover it down cloſe; ... make them very round, and put them into a band-box or a ſieve two or three days; then ſcrape them a little with a waſh-ball ſcraper (which are made for that purpoſe,) and let them lie eight or nine days; afterwards ſcrape them very ſmooth and to your mind.
      • 1790, Nathan Bailey, w, WASH BALL, a Ball of Soap.
      • 1801, Isaac Disraeli, Romances; Second Edition, Corrected. To which is Now Added, A Modern Romance, His baſket was nicely arranged with perfumed waſh-balls, ſweet-ſcented flowers, candied citrons, and cryſtal vials of ottar-gul. The firſt ſlave he met he preſented with a perfumed waſh-ball. And how many asper#Noun 2
      • 1820, James Millar, Elements of Chemistry, with its Application to Explain the Phenomena of Nature and the Processes of Arts and Manufactures, Wash Balls, and Perfumed Soaps. – In preparing the common type of wash balls, a quantity of hard soap is melted and mixed with fine starch, and the usual proportions are, five parts of soap to three parts of starch.
      • 1833, Noah Webster, A Dictionary of the English Language: Abridged from the American Dictionary, for the Use of Primary Schools and the Counting House, Wash-ball, n. a ball of soap for cleansing.
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