antiseptic

adjective
an·​ti·​sep·​tic | \ ˌan-tə-ˈsep-tik How to pronounce antiseptic (audio) \

Definition of antiseptic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : opposing sepsis, putrefaction, or decay especially : preventing or arresting the growth of microorganisms (as on living tissue) an antiseptic solution
b : acting or protecting like an antiseptic an antiseptic mouthwash
2 : relating to or characterized by the use of antiseptics antiseptic treatment
3a : scrupulously clean : aseptic antiseptic surgical instruments
b : extremely neat or orderly especially : neat to the point of being bare or uninteresting a spare, antiseptic waiting room
c : free from what is held to be contaminating an antiseptic version of rustic life
4a : coldly impersonal an antiseptic greeting
b : of, relating to, or being warfare conducted with cold precision from a safe distance with few or no casualties on one's side antiseptic bombings

antiseptic

noun

Definition of antiseptic (Entry 2 of 2)

: a substance that inhibits the growth or action of microorganisms especially in or on living tissue clean the wound with an antiseptic also : germicide

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Other Words from antiseptic

Adjective

antiseptically \ ˌan-​tə-​ˈsep-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce antiseptically (audio) \ adverb

Examples of antiseptic in a Sentence

Adjective

known for keeping a strenuously antiseptic kitchen, the floor of which does indeed seem fit for eating off of for such an expensive, elegant Sunday brunch, one would expect the attendants at the buffet tables to be professionally attired in starched, antiseptic white jackets

Noun

Clean the affected area with an antiseptic. He applied antiseptic to the wound.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Indeed, the whole point of modern special effects is to erase any trace of the human hand, in the name of perfect, impossible, antiseptic naturalism. Robert Lloyd, chicagotribune.com, "The sinister appeal of ‘The Dark Crystal’s’ bad Muppets," 3 Sep. 2019 Indeed, the whole point of modern special effects is to erase any trace of the human hand, in the name of perfect, impossible, antiseptic naturalism. Los Angeles Times, "The sinister appeal of ‘The Dark Crystal’s’ bad muppets," 3 Sep. 2019 The show is safe, tepid, nearly antiseptic, installed on white walls with barebones labels. Brian T. Allen, National Review, "The American Pavilion in the Venice Biennale: Safe and Sorry," 10 Aug. 2019 Certain libraries still have the weird antiseptic feeling of a hospital ward. Dan Chiasson, The New Yorker, "Reader, I Googled It," 26 Aug. 2019 Those qualities radiate from a pair of gently satirical suburban landscapes by John Hrehov, class of 1981, depicting strangely antiseptic and orderly backyards rendered in cocktail hues of lime green, peach and lavender. Steven Litt, cleveland.com, "Cleveland Institute of Art alumni show hits the eye like a tall, cool drink on a hot summer day," 4 Aug. 2019 Mouthwash can be used as an antiseptic to clean wounds. Bay Area News Group, The Mercury News, "California earthquake: How to make your own emergency kit before the Big One hits," 6 July 2019 Yes, Green Corner looks like an antiseptic neighborhood counter-service joint, but just try to keep me away from the kifta kabob, scented with sumac and cinnamon, tender and meaty and dripping with sizzling lamb fat. Dominic Armato, azcentral, "The best restaurants in Mesa," 15 July 2019 And as a working mom, who is always on the go while taking care of an active toddler, Port has recently partnered with Avrio Health, the makers of Betadine topical antiseptic, on the First Aid Myths campaign. Morgan M. Evans, PEOPLE.com, "Whitney Port Says She 'Never Thought' She'd Return to The Hills Married — with a Son!," 19 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The concept of disinfecting our hands with antiseptics is a medical innovation that dates to the early 1820s, when doctors started moistening their hands with liquid chlorides to help contain the spread of contagious diseases. Elizabeth Kiefer, Washington Post, "Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are still a safe bet," 10 June 2019 These are antiseptics which will help to prevent infection. 2. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "The Correct Way to Pop a Pimple," 21 Dec. 2018 As the importance of antiseptics became more widely understood, white was also thought to have the advantage of showing any soiling. The Economist, "Making medical clothing that kills bugs," 28 June 2018 Before antiseptics, many patients perished at the hands of their surgeon. Atlas Obscura, RedEye Chicago, "Explore Chicago: Visit the International Museum of Surgical Science," 17 Apr. 2018 Get our daily newsletter Of the drugs in the study, 156 were antibacterials (144 antibiotics and 12 antiseptics). The Economist, "Non-antibiotic drugs promote antibiotic resistance," 19 Mar. 2018 The surgery, performed without anesthesia or antiseptics, lasted just 25 minutes and produced a 22 ½ pound tumor. Dawn Mitchell, Indianapolis Star, "This woman rode 60 miles on horseback to have a 22-pound tumor removed," 15 Mar. 2018 Armies were burning or cutting off access to Pacific cane fields, and the war effort needed sugar to make everything from antiseptics to explosives. Jennie Rothenberg Gritz, Smithsonian, "The Unsavory History of Sugar, the Insatiable American Craving," 29 May 2017 Instead, go for gentler ingredients that are natural antiseptics and won't leave your skin red and dry. Marissa Desantis, Teen Vogue, "Pimple Popping: How to Do It Safely," 24 Aug. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'antiseptic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of antiseptic

Adjective

1746, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1751, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for antiseptic

Adjective

borrowed from New Latin antisepticus, from anti- anti- + Latin sēpticus "putrefactive, septic"

Note: New Latin antisepticus is first found in the writing of the Dutch physician Herman Boerhaave (1668-1738), e.g., Libellus de materie medica et remediorum formulis (Leiden, 1719), and may have been coined by him.

Noun

borrowed from New Latin antiseptica, antisepticum, noun derivatives of antisepticus antiseptic entry 1

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Statistics for antiseptic

Last Updated

29 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for antiseptic

The first known use of antiseptic was in 1746

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More Definitions for antiseptic

antiseptic

noun

English Language Learners Definition of antiseptic

: a substance that prevents infection in a wound by killing bacteria

antiseptic

adjective
an·​ti·​sep·​tic | \ ˌan-tə-ˈsep-tik How to pronounce antiseptic (audio) \

Kids Definition of antiseptic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: killing or preventing the growth or action of germs that cause decay or sickness Iodine is antiseptic.

antiseptic

noun

Kids Definition of antiseptic (Entry 2 of 2)

: a substance that helps stop the growth or action of germs

antiseptic

adjective
an·​ti·​sep·​tic | \ ˌant-ə-ˈsep-tik How to pronounce antiseptic (audio) \

Medical Definition of antiseptic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : opposing sepsis, putrefaction, or decay especially : preventing or arresting the growth of microorganisms (as on living tissue)
b : acting or protecting like an antiseptic
2 : relating to or characterized by the use of antiseptics
3 : free of living microorganisms : scrupulously clean : aseptic

Other Words from antiseptic

antiseptically \ -​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce antiseptically (audio) \ adverb

antiseptic

noun

Medical Definition of antiseptic (Entry 2 of 2)

: a substance (as hydrogen peroxide) that checks the growth or action of microorganisms especially in or on living tissue also : germicide

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