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Definition of medicine

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Houghton Mifflin

med·i·cine  audio  (md-sn) KEY 

    1. The science of diagnosing, treating, or preventing disease and other damage to the body or mind.
    2. The branch of this science encompassing treatment by drugs, diet, exercise, and other nonsurgical means.
  1. The practice of medicine.
  2. An agent, such as a drug, used to treat disease or injury.
  3. Something that serves as a remedy or corrective: medicine for rebuilding the economy; measures that were harsh medicine.
    1. Shamanistic practices or beliefs, especially among Native Americans.
    2. Something, such as a ritual practice or sacred object, believed to control natural or supernatural powers or serve as a preventive or remedy.

Middle English, from Old French, from Latin medicna, from feminine of medicnus, of a doctor, from medicus, physician ; see medical

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