Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.


Six, eight, ten, by even numbers; just as in medicines by odd numbers.

But are you aware, brother, that it is these medicines which keep me in good health?

Then, as the headman hurried up: "Get me the box of medicines, quick!"

"Physicians are proverbially shy of their own medicines," said he.

They had neither tea nor coffee, and medicines were exhausted.

There are no medicines to be obtained in this lonely place.'

He was most regular in his diet, sleep, and use of medicines.

Medicines, you see, act according to the hand that gives them.

Because, I said, our rulers will often have to practise upon the body corporate with medicines.

The air was heavy with the smell of medicines and vinegar and the odours of sick life.


c.1200, "medical treatment, cure, remedy," also used figuratively, of spiritual remedies, from Old French medecine (Modern French médicine) "medicine, art of healing, cure, treatment, potion," from Latin medicina "the healing art, medicine; a remedy," also used figuratively, perhaps originally ars medicina "the medical art," from fem. of medicinus (adj.) "of a doctor," from medicus "a physician" (see medical); though OED finds evidence for this is wanting. Meaning "a medicinal potion or plaster" in English is mid-14c.

To take (one's) medicine "submit to something disagreeable" is first recorded 1865. North American Indian medicine-man "shaman" is first attested 1801, from American Indian adoption of the word medicine in sense of "magical influence." The U.S.-Canadian boundary they called Medicine Line (first attested 1910), because it conferred a kind of magic protection: punishment for crimes committed on one side of it could be avoided by crossing over to the other. Medicine show "traveling show meant to attract a crowd so patent medicine can be sold to them" is American English, 1938. Medicine ball "stuffed leather ball used for exercise" is from 1889.

Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.