prescription

noun
pre·​scrip·​tion | \ pri-ˈskrip-shən How to pronounce prescription (audio) \

Definition of prescription

1a : the establishment of a claim of title to something under common law usually by use and enjoyment for a period fixed by statute
b : the right or title acquired under common law by such possession
2 : the process of making claim to something by long use and enjoyment
3 : the action of laying down authoritative rules or directions
4a : a written direction for a therapeutic or corrective agent specifically : one for the preparation and use of a medicine
b : a prescribed medicine
c : something (such as a recommendation) resembling a doctor's prescription prescriptions for economic recovery
5a : ancient or long continued custom
b : a claim founded upon ancient custom or long continued use
6 : something prescribed as a rule

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Examples of prescription in a Sentence

The drug is only sold with a prescription. I have to pick up my prescription.
Recent Examples on the Web Opioids include prescription painkillers, fentanyl and heroin. Kolbie Peterson, The Salt Lake Tribune, 19 Oct. 2021 In 2016, Congress rewrote federal law in a way that severely constrained the D.E.A.’s ability to keep prescription painkillers out of the black market after a two-year, $106 million lobbying push from the drug industry. New York Times, 13 Oct. 2021 In an internal sheriff’s investigation, the clerk admitted giving Anderson two prescription painkillers. Ken Armstrong, ProPublica, 8 Oct. 2021 So many prescription painkillers were dispensed in Lake County, Ohio, between 2012 and 2016 that the amount equaled 265 pills for every resident. Mark Gillispie, chicagotribune.com, 2 Oct. 2021 While prescription painkillers once drove the nation's overdose epidemic, they were supplanted first by heroin and then by fentanyl, a dangerously powerful opioid, in recent years. NBC News, 18 Sep. 2021 The bankruptcy case is not the first time Purdue had faced legal trouble over the marketing of its prescription painkillers. CBS News, 1 Sep. 2021 The bankruptcy case is not the first time Purdue had faced legal trouble over the marketing of its prescription painkillers. BostonGlobe.com, 1 Sep. 2021 While prescription painkillers once drove the nation's overdose epidemic, they were supplanted first by heroin and then by fentanyl, a dangerously powerful opioid, in recent years. Marina Pitofsky, USA TODAY, 7 Aug. 2021

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for prescription

partly from Middle English prescripcion establishment of a claim, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin praescription-, praescriptio, from Latin, act of writing at the beginning, order, limitation of subject matter, from praescribere; partly from Latin praescription-, praescriptio order

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Learn More About prescription

Time Traveler for prescription

Time Traveler

The first known use of prescription was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near prescription

prescriptible

prescription

prescription drug

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Statistics for prescription

Last Updated

26 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Prescription.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/prescription. Accessed 26 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for prescription

prescription

noun

English Language Learners Definition of prescription

: a written message from a doctor that officially tells someone to use a medicine, therapy, etc.
: a medicine or drug that a doctor officially tells someone to use
: something that is suggested as a way to do something or to make something happen

prescription

noun
pre·​scrip·​tion | \ pri-ˈskrip-shən How to pronounce prescription (audio) \

Kids Definition of prescription

1 : a written direction or order for the preparing and use of a medicine
2 : a medicine that is ordered by a doctor as a remedy

prescription

noun
pre·​scrip·​tion | \ pri-ˈskrip-shən How to pronounce prescription (audio) \

Medical Definition of prescription

1 : a written direction for the preparation, compounding, and administration of a medicine
2 : a prescribed remedy
3 : a written formula for the grinding of corrective lenses for eyeglasses
4 : a written direction for the application of physical therapy measures (as directed exercise or electrotherapy) in cases of injury or disability

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prescription

noun
pre·​scrip·​tion | \ pri-ˈskrip-shən How to pronounce prescription (audio) \

Legal Definition of prescription

1 : acquisition of an interest (as an easement) in real property that is usually less than a fee by long-term, continuous, open, and hostile use and possession as determined by the law of a jurisdiction gained title by prescription — see also easement by prescription at easement — compare adverse possession at possession
2 in the civil law of Louisiana
a : the running of a period of time set by law after which a right is unenforceable in Louisiana courts but may be enforced in another state forum an interruption of prescription by the prescription of ten years also : the bar to an action that results from prescription — see also peremptory exception — compare peremption
b : the creation of a right by the running of a period of time set by law especially : acquisitive prescription in this entry predial servitudes on property of the state may not be acquired by prescription Louisiana Civil Code
acquisitive prescription \ ə-​ˈkwi-​zə-​tiv-​ \
: acquisition of ownership or other real rights in movables or immovables by continuous, uninterrupted, peaceable, public, and unequivocal possession for a period of time (as 10 years) set by law also : such possession that creates real rights acquisitive prescription is interrupted when the possessor acknowledges the right of the owner Louisiana Civil Code

Note: The Louisiana Civil Code has set various periods of time for acquisitive prescription of movables and immovables. With the shorter periods (as 10 years for immovables or 3 years for movables) the Code also requires that the possessor possess in good faith and under just title. Acquisitive prescription does not run in favor of a person having precarious possession, because he or she possess the property on behalf of or with permission of the owner, until the possessor begins to possess the property on his or her own behalf (as after a lease terminates).

liberative prescription
: a period of time set by law (as one year) after which legal action is barred if no steps have been taken to enforce or litigate the right delictual actions are subject to a liberative prescription of one yearLouisiana Civil Code

Note: Liberative prescription is similar to the common-law statute of limitations.

prescription of nonuse
: the extinguishment or termination of a real right other than ownership as a result of the failure to exercise the right for a period of time (as 10 years) set by law also : the period of time
3 : something prescribed as a rule created a legal prescription against such acts

History and Etymology for prescription

partly from Middle French prescription establishment of a claim, from Late Latin praescription- praescriptio, from Latin, act of writing at the beginning, order, from praescribere to write at the beginning, dictate, order; partly from Latin praescription- praescriptio order

More from Merriam-Webster on prescription

Nglish: Translation of prescription for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of prescription for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about prescription

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