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  1. a means of healing or restoring to health; remedy.
  2. a method or course of remedial treatment, as for disease.
  3. successful remedial treatment; restoration to health.
  4. a means of correcting or relieving anything that is troublesome or detrimental: to seek a cure for inflation.
  5. the act or a method of preserving meat, fish, etc., by smoking, salting, or the like.
  6. spiritual or religious charge of the people in a certain district.
  7. the office or district of a curate or parish priest.
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verb (used with object), cured, cur·ing.
  1. to restore to health.
  2. to relieve or rid of something detrimental, as an illness or a bad habit.
  3. to prepare (meat, fish, etc.) for preservation by salting, drying, etc.
  4. to promote hardening of (fresh concrete or mortar), as by keeping it damp.
  5. to process (rubber, tobacco, etc.) as by fermentation or aging.
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verb (used without object), cured, cur·ing.
  1. to effect a cure.
  2. to become cured.
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Origin of cure

1250–1300; (v.) Middle English curen < Middle French curer < Latin cūrāre to take care of, derivative of cūra care; (noun) Middle English < Old French cure < Latin cūra
Related formscure·less, adjectivecure·less·ly, adverbcur·er, nounhalf-cured, adjectiveo·ver·cured, adjectivesem·i·cured, adjectiveun·cured, adjectivewell-cured, adjective

Synonyms for cure

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Synonym study

9. Cure, heal, remedy imply making well, whole, or right. Cure is applied to the eradication of disease or sickness: to cure a headache. Heal suggests the making whole of wounds, sores, etc.: to heal a burn. Remedy applies especially to making wrongs right: to remedy a mistake.


[kyoo-rey, kyoo r-ey; French ky-rey]
noun, plural cu·rés [kyoo-reyz, kyoo r-eyz; French ky-rey] /kyʊˈreɪz, ˈkyʊər eɪz; French küˈreɪ/.
  1. (in France) a parish priest.
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Origin of curé

1645–55; < French, Old French; modeled on Medieval Latin cūrātus parish priest; see curate
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for cure

medication, recovery, fix, drug, remedy, panacea, treatment, elixir, medicine, antidote, healing, placebo, restore, repair, relieve, rehabilitate, mend, redress, treat, alleviate

Examples from the Web for cure

Contemporary Examples of cure

Historical Examples of cure

British Dictionary definitions for cure


  1. (tr) to get rid of (an ailment, fault, or problem); heal
  2. (tr) to restore to health or good condition
  3. (intr) to bring about a cure
  4. (tr) to preserve (meat, fish, etc) by salting, smoking, etc
  5. (tr)
    1. to treat or finish (a substance) by chemical or physical means
    2. to vulcanize (rubber)
    3. to allow (a polymer) to set often using heat or pressure
  6. (tr) to assist the hardening of (concrete, mortar, etc) by keeping it moist
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  1. a return to health, esp after specific treatment
  2. any course of medical therapy, esp one proved effective in combating a disease
  3. a means of restoring health or improving a condition, situation, etc
  4. the spiritual and pastoral charge of a parishthe cure of souls
  5. a process or method of preserving meat, fish, etc, by salting, pickling, or smoking
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Derived Formscureless, adjectivecurer, noun

Word Origin for cure

(n) C13: from Old French, from Latin cūra care; in ecclesiastical sense, from Medieval Latin cūra spiritual charge; (vb) C14: from Old French curer, from Latin cūrāre to attend to, heal, from cūra care


  1. a parish priest in France
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Word Origin for curé

French, from Medieval Latin cūrātus; see curate 1
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

Word Origin and History for cure


c.1300, "care, heed," from Latin cura "care, concern, trouble," with many figurative extensions, e.g. "study; administration; a mistress," and also "means of healing, remedy," from Old Latin coira-, from PIE root *kois- "be concerned." Meaning "medical care" is late 14c.

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parish priest, from French curé (13c.), from Medieval Latin curatus (see curate).

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late 14c., from Old French curer, from Latin curare "take care of," hence, in medical language, "treat medically, cure" (see cure (n.)). In reference to fish, pork, etc., first recorded 1743. Related: Cured; curing.

Most words for "cure, heal" in European languages originally applied to the person being treated but now can be used with reference to the disease, too. Relatively few show an ancient connection to words for "physician;" typically they are connected instead to words for "make whole" or "tend to" or even "conjurer." French guérir (with Italian guarir, Old Spanish guarir) is from a Germanic verb stem also found in in Gothic warjan, Old English wearian "ward off, prevent, defend" (see warrant (n.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

cure in Medicine


  1. Restoration of health; recovery from disease.
  2. A method or course of treatment used to restore health.
  3. An agent that restores health; a remedy.
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  1. To restore a person to health.
  2. To effect a recovery from a disease or disorder.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with cure


see kill or cure; ounce of prevention (is worth a pound of cure); sure cure.

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.