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90s Slang You Should Know


[poh-shuh n] /ˈpoʊ ʃən/
a drink or draft, especially one having or reputed to have medicinal, poisonous, or magical powers:
a love potion; a sleeping potion.
Origin of potion
1300-50; Middle English pocion < Latin pōtiōn- (stem of pōtiō) a drinking, equivalent to pōt(us), variant of pōtātus, past participle of pōtāre to drink + -iōn- -ion; replacing Middle English pocioun < Anglo-French < Latin, as above
Can be confused
portion, potion.
elixir, brew, concoction, philter. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for potion
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • She dosed him with great content, he, both hands in soap-suds, turning his head to receive the potion.

    The Business of Life Robert W. Chambers
  • Yes; particularly if you take the potion I will send you presently.

    Ten Years Later Alexandre Dumas, Pere
  • The potion was swallowed, and they had only to abide the effects.

    The Countess of Charny Alexandre Dumas (pere)
  • Juliet's query to the Friar had been, 'What if the potion should not work?'

  • And the potion, which was made after a recipe of that same Messer Laurens of Paris, cost no less.

    The Long Night Stanley Weyman
British Dictionary definitions for potion


a drink, esp of medicine, poison, or some supposedly magic beverage
a rare word for beverage
Word Origin
C13: via Old French from Latin pōtiō a drink, especially a poisonous one, from pōtāre to drink
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 potion

c.1300, pocioun "medicinal drink," from Old French pocion "potion, draught, medicine" (12c.), from Latin potionem (nominative potio) "a potion, a drinking," also "poisonous draught, magic potion," from potus, irregular past participle of potare "to drink," from PIE root *po(i)- "to drink" (cf. Sanskrit pati "drinks," panam "beverage;" Greek pinein "to drink," poton "that which one drinks," potos "drinking bout;" Old Church Slavonic piti "to drink," pivo "beverage"). Potus as a past participle adjective in Latin meant "drunken."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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potion in Medicine

potion po·tion (pō'shən)
A liquid medicinal dose or drink.

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