In the palmy days of falconry it was not only when a hawk was actually ill that physic was given.
He said for no harm; to physic cats; what did it matter to me?
For physic, especially as it is now professed by most men, is nothing but a branch of flattery, no less than rhetoric.
“You need to be easy with physic, too,” declared the girl, with sparkling eyes.
Hence, to the physic Garden, where the sensitive plant was shown us for a great wonder.
I like the notion myself; it is at least a truce with physic.
It is as “Sir” Doctor of physic, the host addresses him; also declaring him to be a “proper man,” and like a prelate.
Do not take it away; do not give me the physic of good advice.
However, what with physic and bleeding, Candide's illness became serious.
But after physic came to be studied by the Greeks, they separated the two professions.
c.1300, fysike, "art of healing, medical science," also "natural science" (c.1300), from Old French fisike "natural science, art of healing" (12c.) and directly from Latin physica (fem. singular of physicus) "study of nature," from Greek 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 root *bheue- "to be exist, grow" (see be). Spelling with ph- attested from late 14c. (see ph). As a noun, "medicine that acts as a laxative," 1610s. The verb meaning "to dose with medicine" is attested from late 14c.
physic phys·ic (fĭz'ĭk)
A medicine or drug, especially a cathartic.