To reduce to a fine, unmixed, or pure state; to free from impurities; to free from dross or alloy; to separate from extraneous matter; to purify; to defecate; as, to refine gold or silver; to refine iron; to refine wine or sugar.
To purify from what is gross, coarse, vulgar, inelegant, low, and the like; to make elegant or exellent; to polish; as, to refine the manners, the language, the style, the taste, the intellect, or the moral feelings.
To become pure; to be cleared of feculent matter.
To improve in accuracy, delicacy, or excellence.
To affect nicety or subtilty in thought or language.
Poetry should help, not only to refine the language of the time, but to prevent it from changing too rapidly. T. S. Eliot
The natural effect of sorrow over the dead is to refine and elevate the mind. Washington Irving
I have terrible hearing trouble. I have unwittingly helped to invent and refine a type of music that makes its principal proponents deaf. Pete Townshend
Sometimes you try a song and people don't respond, or you tell a story and you just hear crickets. But when you play thousands of shows, you start to refine stuff. Harry Connick, Jr.
To that class we may leave it to refine the vernacular dialects of the country, to enrich those dialects with terms of science borrowed from the Western nomenclature, and to render them by degrees fit vehicles for conveying knowledge to the great mass of the population. Thomas B. Macaulay