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[pohl-tis] /ˈpoʊl tɪs/
a soft, moist mass of cloth, bread, meal, herbs, etc., applied hot as a medicament to the body.
verb (used with object), poulticed, poulticing.
to apply a poultice to.
1535-45; earlier pultes, plural (taken as singular) of Latin puls (stem pult-) thick pap. See pulse2
Related forms
unpoulticed, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for poultices
  • In emergency situations it is often easy to find plantain plants and to make a tea for poultices and wound dressings.
  • poultices, soft water washes and chemical washes were tried and were mostly ineffective cleaning tools.
  • While infusions and poultices retain the plant's tannic acid, the distillate does not.
  • poultices made from the gummy secretions from the elm's bark were applied to infected wounds.
  • Compresses, poultices and plasters were plant materials applied externally, usually in combination with heat or moisture.
  • poultices were used to remove adhesive residue and draw out the staining.
  • Soft-soap or bread and milk poultices were used on boils.
  • All participants will learn how to make their own teas, poultices, tinctures and salves.
British Dictionary definitions for poultices


(med) Also called cataplasm. a local moist and often heated application for the skin consisting of substances such as kaolin, linseed, or mustard, used to improve the circulation, treat inflamed areas, etc
(Austral, slang) a large sum of money, esp a debt
Word Origin
C16: from earlier pultes, from Latin puls a thick porridge
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 poultices



16c. alteration of Middle English pultes (late 14c.), ultimately from Latin pultes, plural of puls "porridge" (see pulse (n.2)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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poultices in Medicine

poultice poul·tice (pōl'tĭs)
A soft moist adhesive mass, as of meal or clay, that is usually heated, spread on cloth, and applied to warm, moisten, or stimulate an aching or inflamed part of the body. Also called cataplasm.

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