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[sop-uh-rif-ik, soh-puh-] /ˌsɒp əˈrɪf ɪk, ˌsoʊ pə-/
causing or tending to cause sleep.
pertaining to or characterized by sleep or sleepiness; sleepy; drowsy.
something that causes sleep, as a medicine or drug.
Origin of soporific
1655-65; < Latin sopor sopor + -i- + -fic; compare French soporifique
Related forms
soporifically, adverb
antisoporific, adjective, noun
nonsoporific, adjective, noun
unsoporific, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for soporific
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The first pages of most of these old papers are as soporific as a bed of poppies.

    Old News Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • He had made up his mind that he might have to spend days in this soporific hamlet.

    In Apple-Blossom Time

    Clara Louise Burnham
  • The soporific, thwarted in its effect for a moment, redoubled its power over him.

    The Knight of Malta Eugene Sue
  • I shall administer a soporific to these men, and then shall extinguish the light.

    Roger the Bold F. S. Brereton
  • The restlessness of the sea acts as a soporific on jangled nerves.

    The Journal of a Disappointed Man Wilhelm Nero Pilate Barbellion
British Dictionary definitions for soporific


inducing sleep
drowsy; sleepy
a drug or other agent that induces sleep
Derived Forms
soporifically, adverb
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 soporific

"tending to produce sleep," 1680s, from French soporifique (17c.), formed in French from Latin sopor (genitive soporis) "deep sleep" (see sopor). As a noun from 1722. Earlier as an adjective was soporiferous (1580s as "characterized by excessive sleep," c.1600 as "soporific").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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soporific in Medicine

soporific sop·o·rif·ic (sŏp'ə-rĭf'ĭk, sō'pə-)

  1. Inducing or tending to induce sleep.

  2. Sleepy; drowsy.

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