intoxicate

adjective
in·​tox·​i·​cate | \ in-ˈtäk-si-kət How to pronounce intoxicate (audio) \

Definition of intoxicate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intoxicate

verb
in·​tox·​i·​cate | \ in-ˈtäk-sə-ˌkāt How to pronounce intoxicate (audio) \
intoxicated; intoxicating

Definition of intoxicate (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : poison
2a : to excite or stupefy by alcohol or a drug especially to the point where physical and mental control is markedly diminished
b : to excite or elate to the point of enthusiasm or frenzy

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Did You Know?

Verb

For those who think that alcohol and drugs qualify as poisons, the history of intoxicate offers some etymological evidence to bolster your argument. Intoxicate traces back to toxicum, the Latin word for "poison" - and the earliest meaning of intoxicate was just that: "to poison." This sense is now extremely rare, and we currently talk about such harmless things as flowers and perfume having the power to intoxicate. Toxicum turns up in the etymologies of a number of other English words including toxic ("poisonous"), intoxicant ("something that intoxicates") and detoxify ("to remove a poison from"), as well as a number of the names for various poisons themselves.

Examples of intoxicate in a Sentence

Verb

The little bit of beer I drank was not enough to intoxicate me. the stunning spectacle of this Las Vegas show is sure to intoxicate spectators

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Parr has the type of beauty that’s intoxicating, and a body that’s envy-inducing. Jennifer Ford, Essence, "Lamar Odom’s New Girlfriend Is A Bombshell," 9 Aug. 2019 Kylie has never done her makeup intoxicated, and Khloe is scandalized. Katherine J. Igoe, Marie Claire, "Actually, Watching Kylie Jenner & Khloé Kardashian Get Drunk and Try to Do Makeup Is Hilarious," 9 Aug. 2019 Zhukovskyy's lawyer in that case, John O'Brien, said his client denies being intoxicated and will fight the charge. Fox News, "NH governor rips Mass., says DMV 'deficiencies' led to horrific crash that killed 7," 3 Aug. 2019 Legislators in Nashville, Tenn., are considering a ban on electric scooters after a man’s death in May; the rider was allegedly intoxicated and swerved in front of an SUV, The Tennessean reported. Andrew Kenney, The Denver Post, "Colorado Rockies ban scooter riding near Coors Field during games amid heavier traffic, face-first crash," 18 July 2019 According to the statement of charges, the victim stated Wiles came home from work intoxicated and yelling at her. Akira Kyles, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "Taneytown man faces assault charges," 15 July 2019 When confronted by police, according to the statement, Seal not only admitted to hitting the victim, but also admitted to being intoxicated from drinking for about 10 days. Akira Kyles, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "Westminster man charged with assault after allegedly hitting woman in face," 24 July 2019 He was intoxicated and smelled like alcohol, but was respectful and communicated clearly. Bob Sandrick, cleveland.com, "Angry drunk woman arrested after yelling, driving, resisting and flopping in Brook Park," 12 July 2019 While not intoxicating, CBD has various medical uses, including treating certain forms of epilepsy. Michael Zoorob, Washington Post, "How will you know if there’s E. coli in your marijuana? No one’s figured out how to test and regulate it yet.," 19 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'intoxicate.' 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 intoxicate

Adjective

1581, in the meaning defined above

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for intoxicate

Verb

Middle English, from Medieval Latin intoxicatus, past participle of intoxicare, from Latin in- + toxicum poison — more at toxic

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Statistics for intoxicate

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Time Traveler for intoxicate

The first known use of intoxicate was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for intoxicate

intoxicate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of intoxicate

somewhat formal
of alcohol, a drug, etc. : to make (someone) unable to think and behave normally
: to excite or please (someone) in a way that suggests the effect of alcohol or a drug

intoxicate

verb
in·​tox·​i·​cate | \ in-ˈtäk-sə-ˌkāt How to pronounce intoxicate (audio) \
intoxicated; intoxicating

Kids Definition of intoxicate

1 : to affect by alcohol or a drug especially so that normal thinking and acting becomes difficult or impossible : make drunk
2 : to make wildly excited or enthusiastic Intoxicated as he was with the heavens, he couldn't imagine needing anything on earth.— Katherine Paterson, Bridge to Terabithia

intoxicate

transitive verb
in·​tox·​i·​cate | \ -sə-ˌkāt How to pronounce intoxicate (audio) \
intoxicated; intoxicating

Medical Definition of intoxicate

1 : poison
2 : to excite or stupefy by alcohol or a drug especially to the point where physical and mental control is markedly diminished

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intoxicate

transitive verb
in·​tox·​i·​cate | \ in-ˈtäk-sə-ˌkāt How to pronounce intoxicate (audio) \
intoxicated; intoxicating

Legal Definition of intoxicate

: to excite or stupefy by alcohol or a drug especially to the point where physical and mental control is markedly diminished — see also driving under the influence

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Comments on intoxicate

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