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physic

[fiz-ik] /ˈfɪz ɪk/
noun
1.
a medicine that purges; cathartic; laxative.
2.
any medicine; a drug or medicament.
3.
Archaic. the medical art or profession.
4.
Obsolete, natural science.
verb (used with object), physicked, physicking.
5.
to treat with or act upon as a physic or medicine.
6.
to work upon as a medicine does; relieve or cure.
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300; (noun) Middle English fisyk(e), phisik(e) (< Old French fisique) < Latin physica natural science (Medieval Latin: medical science) < Greek physikḗ science of nature, noun use of feminine adj.: pertaining to nature (akin to phŷlon tribe, phylon); (v.) Middle English, derivative of the noun
Can be confused
physic, physique.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for physic

physic

/ˈfɪzɪk/
noun
1.
(rare) a medicine or drug, esp a cathartic or purge
2.
(archaic) the art or skill of healing
3.
an archaic term for physics (sense 1)
verb -ics, -icking, -icked
4.
(transitive) (archaic) to treat (a patient) with medicine
Derived Forms
physicky, adjective
Word Origin
C13: from Old French fisique, via Latin, from Greek phusikē, from phusis nature
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for physic
physic
c.1300, "art of healing, medical science," also "natural science" (c.1300), from O.Fr. fisike "natural science, art of healing" (12c.), from L. physica (fem. sing.) "study of nature," from Gk. physike episteme "knowledge of nature," from fem. of physikos "pertaining to nature," from physis "nature," from phyein "to bring forth, produce, make to grow" (cf. phyton "growth, plant," phyle "tribe, race," phyma "a growth, tumor") from PIE base *bheu- "to be exist, grow" (cf. O.E. beon "to be," see be). Especially in Gk. ta physika, lit. "the natural things," name of Aristotle's treatise on nature. The verb meaning "to dose with medicine" is attested from late 14c.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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physic in Medicine

physic phys·ic (fĭz'ĭk)
n.
A medicine or drug, especially a cathartic.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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