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[in-tok-si-key-ting] /ɪnˈtɒk sɪˌkeɪ tɪŋ/
causing or capable of causing intoxication:
intoxicating beverages.
exhilarating; exciting:
an intoxicating idea.
Origin of intoxicating
1625-35; intoxicate + -ing2
Related forms
intoxicatingly, adverb
nonintoxicating, adjective
nonintoxicatingly, adverb
unintoxicating, adjective


[v. in-tok-si-keyt; adj. in-tok-suh-kit, -keyt] /v. ɪnˈtɒk sɪˌkeɪt; adj. ɪnˈtɒk sə kɪt, -ˌkeɪt/
verb (used with object), intoxicated, intoxicating.
to affect temporarily with diminished physical and mental control by means of alcoholic liquor, a drug, or another substance, especially to excite or stupefy with liquor.
to make enthusiastic; elate strongly, as by intoxicants; exhilarate:
The prospect of success intoxicated him.
Pathology. to poison.
verb (used without object), intoxicated, intoxicating.
to cause or produce intoxication:
having the power to intoxicate.
Archaic. intoxicated.
1375-1425; late Middle English < Medieval Latin intoxicātus, past participle of intoxicāre to poison. See in-2, toxic, -ate1
Related forms
[in-tok-si-kuh-buh l] /ɪnˈtɒk sɪ kə bəl/ (Show IPA),
intoxicator, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for intoxicating
  • The process of capturing and moving them to the new reserve involves an intoxicating mix of excitement and danger.
  • Perfume ads always try to convince us that their potions are intoxicating.
  • There was something intoxicating about arriving at each small town and tiny community that could only be reached by foot.
  • The tune was intoxicating, leaving all of us staring at the ground and bobbing our heads.
  • There is, alternatively, the compounding and intoxicating effect of free.
  • Many of them are in the grip of an intoxicating metaphysics of utterness that creates signature moments of total theatrics.
  • The law firm's growth, in particular, he found intoxicating.
  • Walk into any fashion store and the scenes are visually intoxicating.
  • These were movies that loosened the tuxedo tie and the tongue to provide an intoxicated if not intoxicating diversion.
British Dictionary definitions for intoxicating


(of an alcoholic drink) producing in a person a state ranging from euphoria to stupor, usually accompanied by loss of inhibitions and control; inebriating
stimulating, exciting, or producing great elation
Derived Forms
intoxicatingly, adverb


verb (transitive)
(of an alcoholic drink) to produce in (a person) a state ranging from euphoria to stupor, usually accompanied by loss of inhibitions and control; make drunk; inebriate
to stimulate, excite, or elate so as to overwhelm
(of a drug) to poison
Derived Forms
intoxicable, adjective
intoxicative, adjective
intoxicator, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Medieval Latin, from intoxicāre to poison, from Latin toxicum poison; see toxic
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for intoxicating



"to poison," mid-15c., from Medieval Latin intoxicatus, past participle of intoxicare "to poison," from Latin in- "in" (see in- (2)) + toxicare "to poison," from toxicum "poison" (see toxic). Meaning "make drunk" first recorded 1570s. Related: Intoxicated; intoxicating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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intoxicating in Medicine

intoxicate in·tox·i·cate (ĭn-tŏk'sĭ-kāt')
v. in·tox·i·cat·ed, in·tox·i·cat·ing, in·tox·i·cates
To stupefy or excite, as by the action of a chemical substance such as alcohol.

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