snake oil

noun

Definition of snake oil

1 :any of various substances or mixtures sold (as by a traveling medicine show) as medicine usually without regard to their medical worth or properties

First Known Use of snake oil

1917


SNAKE OIL Defined for English Language Learners

snake oil

noun

Definition of snake oil for English Language Learners

  • : something that is sold as medicine but that is not really useful or helpful in any way


Medical Dictionary

snake oil

noun

medical Definition of snake oil

:any of various substances or mixtures sold (as by a traveling medicine show) as medicine usually without having had the claims of their medical worth or properties substantiated by scientific tests

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