What does poison mean?

Definitions for poison
ˈpɔɪ zənpoi·son

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word poison.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. poison, toxicant, poisonous substancenoun

    any substance that causes injury or illness or death of a living organism

  2. poisonverb

    anything that harms or destroys

    "the poison of fascism"

  3. poisonverb

    spoil as if by poison

    "poison someone's mind"; "poison the atmosphere in the office"

  4. poisonverb

    kill with poison

    "She poisoned her husband"

  5. poison, envenomverb

    add poison to

    "Her husband poisoned her drink in order to kill her"

  6. poisonverb

    kill by its poison

    "This mushrooms can poison"

  7. poisonverb

    administer poison to

    "She poisoned her husband but he did not die"


  1. poisonnoun

    A substance that is harmful or lethal to a living organism.

    We used a poison to kill the weeds.

  2. poisonnoun

    Something that harms a person or thing.

    Gossip is a malicious poison.

  3. poisonnoun

    A drink; liquor.

  4. poisonverb

    To use poison to kill or paralyse somebody

    The assassin poisoned the king.

  5. poisonverb

    To pollute; to cause some part of the environment to become poisonous

    That factory is poisoning the river.

  6. poisonverb

    To cause something to become much worse

  7. poisonverb

    To cause someone to hate or to have unfair negative opinions

    She's poisoned him against all his old friends.

  8. Etymology: From poison, from potio, from poto. See also potion and potable.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. POISONnoun

    That which destroys or injures life by a small quantity, and by means not obvious to the senses; venom.

    Etymology: poison, Fr.

    The tongue is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. Ja.

    Themselves were first to do the ill,
    E’er they thereof the knowledge could attain;
    Like him that knew not poison ’s power to kill,
    Until, by tasting it, himself was slain. Davies.

    One gives another a cup of poison, but at the same time tells him it is a cordial, and so he drinks it off and dies. South.

  2. To Poisonverb

    Etymology: from the noun.

    Envy is a lawless enemy, against whom poisoned arrows may be used. Anonymous.

    He was so discouraged, that he poisoned himself and died. 2 Mac. x. 13.

    Drink with Walters, or with Chartres eat;
    They’ll never poison you, they’ll only cheat. Alexander Pope.

    The other messenger,
    Whose welcome I perceiv’d, had poison’d mine. William Shakespeare.

    Hast thou not
    With thy false arts poison’d his people’s loyalty? Nicholas Rowe.


  1. Poison

    Poison is a chemical substance that has a detrimental effect to life. The term is used in a wide range of scientific fields and industries, where it is often specifically defined. It may also be applied colloquially or figuratively, with a broad sense. Whether something is considered a poison may change depending on the amount, the circumstances, and what living things are present. Poisoning could be accidental or deliberate, and if the cause can be identified there may be ways to neutralise the effects or minimise the symptoms. In biology, a poison is a chemical substance causing death, injury or harm to organisms or their parts. In medicine, poisons are a kind of toxin that are delivered passively, not actively. In industry the term may be negative, something to be removed to make a thing safe, or positive, an agent to limit unwanted pests. In ecological terms, poisons introduced into the environment can later cause unwanted effects elsewhere, or in other parts of the food chain.


  1. poison

    A poison is a substance that, when introduced into or absorbed by a living organism, causes damage, illness, or death, often by chemical reactions or other activity at the molecular level. It can be naturally present in certain living organisms, plants or artificially created in laboratories. Effects of poison can range from minor irritations to severe harm or even fatality. Its severity is generally determined by the quantity, method of exposure, duration of exposure, and the individual's resistance to it.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Poisonnoun

    any agent which, when introduced into the animal organism, is capable of producing a morbid, noxious, or deadly effect upon it; as, morphine is a deadly poison; the poison of pestilential diseases

  2. Poisonnoun

    that which taints or destroys moral purity or health; as, the poison of evil example; the poison of sin

  3. Poisonnoun

    to put poison upon or into; to infect with poison; as, to poison an arrow; to poison food or drink

  4. Poisonnoun

    to injure or kill by poison; to administer poison to

  5. Poisonnoun

    to taint; to corrupt; to vitiate; as, vice poisons happiness; slander poisoned his mind

  6. Poisonverb

    to act as, or convey, a poison

  7. Etymology: [Cf. OF. poisonner, F. empoissoner, L. potionare to give to drink. See Poison, n.]


  1. Poison

    In the context of biology, poisons are substances that cause disturbances to organisms, usually by chemical reaction or other activity on the molecular scale, when a sufficient quantity is absorbed by an organism. The fields of medicine and zoology often distinguish a poison from a toxin, and from a venom. Toxins are poisons produced by some biological function in nature, and venoms are usually defined as toxins that are injected by a bite or sting to cause their effect, while other poisons are generally defined as substances absorbed through epithelial linings such as the skin or gut.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Poison

    poi′zn, n. any substance which, introduced into the living organism, tends to destroy its life or impair its health: anything malignant or infectious: that which taints or destroys moral purity.—v.t. to infect or to kill with poison: to taint: to mar: to embitter: to corrupt.—adj. Poi′sonable.—ns. Poi′soner; Poi′son-fang, one of two large tubular teeth in the upper jaw of venomous serpents, through which poison passes from glands at their roots when the animal bites; Poi′son-gland, a gland which secretes poison; Poi′son-ī′vy, a shrub-vine of North America, causing a cutaneous eruption; Poi′son-nut, the nux vomica.—adj. Poi′sonous, having the quality of poison: destructive: impairing soundness or purity.—adv. Poi′sonously.—n. Poi′sonousness. [Fr.,—L. potio, a draught—potāre, to drink.]

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  1. poison

    Song lyrics by poison -- Explore a large variety of song lyrics performed by poison on the Lyrics.com website.

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British National Corpus

  1. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'poison' in Nouns Frequency: #2986

How to pronounce poison?

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  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of poison in Chaldean Numerology is: 4

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of poison in Pythagorean Numerology is: 7

Examples of poison in a Sentence

  1. Ralph Waldo Emerson:

    Tobacco, coffee, alcohol, hashish, prussic acid, strychnine, are weak dilutions the surest poison is time.

  2. Jean Cocteau:

    The instinct of nearly all societies is to lock up anybody who is truly free. First, society begins by trying to beat you up. If this fails, they try to poison you. If this fails too, they finish by loading honors on your head.

  3. Bernie Sanders:

    First thing you do is say, people are not paying a water bill for poison water. And that is retroactive, you are playing three times more for poison water than I am paying in Burlington, Vermont, for clean water.

  4. Miyoko Sakashita:

    The federal government’s turning a blind eye as offshore fracking threatens to poison our beautiful beaches and coastal waters, we need offshore fracking stopped immediately before chemical contamination or an oil spill devastates California’s coastal communities and kills sea otters and other endangered marine wildlife.

  5. Lucius Annaeus Seneca:

    Malice drinks one half of its own poison.

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Translations for poison

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"poison." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 10 Dec. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/poison>.

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    quickly aroused to anger
    • A. jejune
    • B. irascible
    • C. bonzer
    • D. tenebrous

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