- a medicine that relieves or allays pain.
- anything that relieves distress or pain: The music was an anodyne to his grief.
- relieving pain.
- soothing to the mind or feelings.
Origin of anodyne
- a drug that relieves pain; analgesic
- anything that alleviates mental distress
- capable of relieving pain or distress
Word Origin for anodyne
1540s, from Medieval Latin anodynus "pain-removing, allaying pain," from Latin anodynus "painless," from Greek anodynos "free from pain," from an- "without" (see an- (1)) + odyne "pain," a word perhaps from PIE root *ed- "to eat" (cf., from the same root, Lithuanian edžioti "to devour, bite," edžiotis "to suffer pain;" see eat). In old slang, frequently a euphemism for "death;" e.g. anodyne necklace "hangman's noose."
- An agent that relieves pain.