1

poison

play
noun poi·son \ˈpȯi-zən\

Definition of poison

  1. 1a :  a substance that through its chemical action usually kills, injures, or impairs an organismb (1) :  something destructive or harmful (2) :  an object of aversion or abhorrence

  2. 2 :  a substance that inhibits the activity of another substance or the course of a reaction or process a catalyst poison

Examples of poison in a Sentence

  1. a jar of rat poison

  2. The killer gave her victims food laced with poison.

  3. suck poison from a snake bite

  4. The villain in the play dies by drinking a vial of poison.

  5. Poverty is a poison to society.

Recent Examples of poison from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of poison

Middle English, from Anglo-French poisun drink, potion, poison, from Latin potion-, potio drink — more at potion

Other Chemical Engineering Terms


2

poison

verb poi·son

Definition of poison

poisoned

;

poisoning

play \ˈpȯiz-niŋ, ˈpȯi-zən-iŋ\
  1. transitive verb
  2. 1a :  to injure or kill with poisonb :  to treat, taint, or impregnate with or as if with poison

  3. 2 :  to exert a baneful influence on :  corrupt poisoned their minds

  4. 3 :  to inhibit the activity, course, or occurrence of on the night when he poisoned my rest — Charles Dickens

poisoner

play \ˈpȯiz-nər, ˈpȯi-zən-ər\ noun

Examples of poison in a Sentence

  1. How did the murderer poison the victim?

  2. Hundreds were poisoned from drinking the contaminated water.

  3. He was poisoned with cyanide.

  4. The factory poisoned the air with its fumes.

  5. Illegal dumping of waste is poisoning the stream and killing fish.

  6. He poisoned their minds with hatred for her.

  7. His angry outburst poisoned the atmosphere of the party.

  8. She was working in a hostile environment poisoned by sexist jokes.

Recent Examples of poison from the Web

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

First Known Use of poison

14th century


3

poison

adjective poi·son

Definition of poison

  1. 1 :  poisonous, venomous a poison plant a poison tongue

  2. 2 :  impregnated with poison :  poisoned a poison arrow

Examples of poison in a Sentence

  1. the witch gave Snow White a poison apple

Recent Examples of poison from the Web

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

First Known Use of poison

15th century



POISON Defined for English Language Learners

poison

play
noun

Definition of poison for English Language Learners

  • : a substance that can cause people or animals to die or to become very sick if it gets into their bodies especially by being swallowed

  • : something (such as an idea, emotion, or situation) that is very harmful or unpleasant

poison

verb

Definition of poison for English Language Learners

  • : to cause (a person or animal) to die or to become very sick with poison

  • : to put a harmful or deadly substance in or on (something)

  • : to change (something) in a very harmful or unpleasant way


POISON Defined for Kids

1

poison

play
noun poi·son \ˈpȯi-zən\

Definition of poison for Students

  1. :  a substance that by its chemical action can injure or kill a living thing

History for poison

Both poison and potion come from the same Latin word, potio, the original meaning of which was just “a drink.” Already in Latin, however, potio could refer to a drink containing powerful substances that might heal or charm—what we call a potion. The Latin word potio became poison in Old French and began to refer to any powerful substance, whether a drink or not, that might sicken or kill when consumed. Poison and later potion both came into English from French.


2

poison

play
verb poi·son

Definition of poison for Students

poisoned

;

poisoning

  1. 1 :  to injure or kill with poison

  2. 2 :  to put poison on or in


Medical Dictionary

1

poison

play
noun poi·son \ˈpȯiz-ən\

Medical Definition of poison

  1. 1:  a substance that through its chemical action usually kills, injures, or impairs an organism

  2. 2:  a substance that inhibits the activity of another substance or the course of a reaction or process a catalyst poison


2

poison

transitive verb poi·son

Medical Definition of poison

poisoned

;

poisoning

\ˈpȯiz-niŋ, -ən-iŋ\play
  1. 1:  to injure or kill with poison

  2. 2:  to treat, taint, or impregnate with poison


3

poison

adjective poi·son

Medical Definition of poison

  1. 1:  poisonous a poison plant

  2. 2:  impregnated with poison a poison arrow



Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up poison? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

the weight of a container

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Emoji Quiz

  • emoji-the-quiz
  • What phase of the moon is this: 🌖 ?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!