med·​i·​cine | \ ˈme-di-sən How to pronounce medicine (audio) , British usually ˈmed-sən How to pronounce medicine (audio) \

Definition of medicine

1a : a substance or preparation used in treating disease cough medicine
b : something that affects well-being he's bad medicine— Zane Grey
2a : the science and art dealing with the maintenance of health and the prevention, alleviation, or cure of disease She's interested in a career in medicine.
b : the branch of medicine concerned with the nonsurgical treatment of disease
3 : a substance (such as a drug or potion) used to treat something other than disease
4 : an object held in traditional American Indian belief to give control over natural or magical forces also : magical power or a magical rite

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Other Words from medicine

medicine transitive verb

Examples of medicine in a Sentence

He forgot to take his medicine. Did you look in the medicine cabinet for a pain reliever? Their research has led to many important advances in modern medicine. She's interested in a career in medicine.
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Recent Examples on the Web South Florida residents have come out en masse this week to show solidarity with demonstrations in Cuba, in which protesters voiced grievances over the lack of basic goods such as food, medicine, internet access and COVID-19 vaccines. Staff And Wire Reports,, 15 July 2021 The United Nations in South Africa expressed concern that the violence was disrupting transport for workers and medical staff and causing shortages of food, medicine and other essential products. NBC News, 14 July 2021 Cuba is suffering its worst economic crisis in decades, with medicine, food shortages and high prices exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic. Louisville Courier Journal, 14 July 2021 Many of these families are struggling to pay for basic needs, including food, medicine, utility and rent bills. Mark Wolfe For Cnn Business Perspectives, CNN, 13 July 2021 Veracity also recommends diet, lifestyle, and supplements from an all-female team of medical advisers, with dermatology, endocrinology, OB-GYN, functional medicine, molecular and integrative physiology, and nutrition experts. Laura Pitcher, Harper's BAZAAR, 13 July 2021 But the Serra was a must-have for Rales and her husband, Mitch Rales, who with his brother Steven controls Danaher Corp., a conglomerate with holdings in science, technology, medicine and industry. Washington Post, 12 July 2021 In 1933, after years of working with one of Europe’s leading neurologists, Guttmann and other Jews were ordered to stop practicing medicine at the hospital under Nuremberg Law, according to the National Paralympic Heritage Trust's website. Bailey Schulz, USA TODAY, 4 July 2021 Both research and technology have come a long way since Min started practicing medicine more than two decades ago. Katie Jennings, Forbes, 21 June 2021

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for medicine

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin medicina, from feminine of medicinus of a physician, from medicus

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Learn More About medicine

Time Traveler for medicine

Time Traveler

The first known use of medicine was in the 13th century

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Statistics for medicine

Last Updated

17 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Medicine.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for medicine



English Language Learners Definition of medicine

: a substance that is used in treating disease or relieving pain and that is usually in the form of a pill or a liquid
: the science that deals with preventing, curing, and treating diseases


med·​i·​cine | \ ˈme-də-sən How to pronounce medicine (audio) \

Kids Definition of medicine

1 : something (as a pill or liquid) used to prevent, cure, or relieve a disease
2 : a science dealing with the prevention, cure, or relief of disease


med·​i·​cine | \ ˈmed-ə-sən, British usually ˈmed-sən \

Medical Definition of medicine

1 : a substance or preparation used in treating disease
2a : the science and art dealing with the maintenance of health and the prevention, alleviation, or cure of disease
b : the branch of medicine concerned with the nonsurgical treatment of disease

More from Merriam-Webster on medicine

Nglish: Translation of medicine for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of medicine for Arabic Speakers


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