clean slate

clean slate
C c


    • US Pronunciation
    • US IPA
    • UK Pronunciation
    • UK IPA
    • [kleen sleyt]
    • /klin sleɪt/
    • /kliːn sleɪt/
    • US Pronunciation
    • US IPA
    • [kleen sleyt]
    • /klin sleɪt/

Definitions of clean slate words

  • noun clean slate a record without dishonour 3
  • noun clean slate a fine-grained rock formed by the metamorphosis of clay, shale, etc., that tends to split along parallel cleavage planes, usually at an angle to the planes of stratification. 1
  • noun clean slate a thin piece or plate of this rock or a similar material, used especially for roofing or as a writing surface. 1
  • noun clean slate a dull, dark bluish gray. 1
  • noun clean slate a list of candidates, officers, etc., to be considered for nomination, appointment, election, or the like. 1
  • verb with object clean slate to cover with or as with slate. 1

Information block about the term

Origin of clean slate

First appearance:

before 1300
One of the 15% oldest English words
1300-50; Middle English sclate < Middle French esclate, feminine of esclat piece split off; see slat1

Historical Comparancy

Parts of speech for Clean slate


clean slate popularity

A common word. It’s meaning is known to most children of preschool age. About 95% of English native speakers know the meaning and use the word.
Most Europeans know this English word. The frequency of it’s usage is somewhere between "mom" and "screwdriver".

clean slate usage trend in Literature

This diagram is provided by Google Ngram Viewer

Synonyms for clean slate

noun clean slate

  • square one — a starting point; initial stage or step: If this plan fails, we'll have to go back to square one.
  • tabula rasa — a mind not yet affected by experiences, impressions, etc.
  • clean hands — freedom from guilt
  • clean sweep — an overwhelming victory
  • new start — an employee who has just joined a company or organization

See also

Matching words

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