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Denotation vs. Connotation

irritant

[ir-i-tnt] /ˈɪr ɪ tnt/
adjective
1.
tending to cause irritation; irritating.
noun
2.
anything that irritates.
3.
Physiology, Pathology. a biological, chemical, or physical agent that stimulates a characteristic function or elicits a response, especially an inflammatory response.
Origin of irritant
1630-1640
1630-40; < Latin irrītant- (stem of irrītāns), present participle of irrītāre to irritate; see -ant
Related forms
irritancy, noun
nonirritancy, noun
nonirritant, adjective
unirritant, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for irritant
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • In experiments carried out on animals this immunity to bee poison has been also induced by repeated application of the irritant.

    Bacteria in Daily Life Mrs. Percy Frankland
  • Narcotic, anti-spasmodic, and irritant poison; one to two drachms.

    Cattle and Their Diseases Robert Jennings
  • It acted upon mens nerves as an irritant, moving them to frenzies of rage and despair.

    The Garden of Swords Max Pemberton
  • Tonic, irritant, and caustic; dose internally, one to two drachms.

    Cattle and Their Diseases Robert Jennings
  • irritant Cathartics, like irritant emetics, may sometimes affect remote parts on the principle of counter-irritation.

    The Action of Medicines in the System Frederick William Headland
  • The Bicarbonates of the fixed alkalies are best, because least irritant.

    The Action of Medicines in the System Frederick William Headland
  • I swear to you that the succubus came, irritant and palpable and most tenacious.

    L-bas J. K. Huysmans
  • The first of these is the mildest, and the last the most irritant of the three.

    The Action of Medicines in the System Frederick William Headland
  • The irritant poison of the gas attacked their skins wherever the hair was thin, and caused the most dreadful wounds.

    G. H. Q. Frank Fox
British Dictionary definitions for irritant

irritant

/ˈɪrɪtənt/
adjective
1.
causing irritation; irritating
noun
2.
something irritant
Derived Forms
irritancy, noun
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 irritant
adj.

1630s, from Latin irritantem (nominative irritans), present participle of irritare (see irritate). As a noun, from 1802.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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irritant in Medicine

irritant ir·ri·tant (ĭr'ĭ-tənt)
adj.
Causing irritation, especially physical irritation. n.
A source of irritation.

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