var·​i·​o·​la·​tion ˌvar-ē-ə-ˈlā-shən How to pronounce variolation (audio)
: the deliberate inoculation of an uninfected person with the smallpox virus (as by contact with pustular matter) that was widely practiced before the era of vaccination as prophylaxis against the severe form of smallpox

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Cite this Entry

“Variolation.” Medical Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Mar. 2024.

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