[noun, adjective oh-pee-it, -eyt; verb oh-pee-eyt]
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  1. a drug containing opium or its derivatives, used in medicine for inducing sleep and relieving pain.
  2. any sedative, soporific, or narcotic.
  3. anything that causes dullness or inaction or that soothes the feelings.
  1. mixed or prepared with opium.
  2. inducing sleep; soporific; narcotic.
  3. causing dullness or inaction.
verb (used with object), o·pi·at·ed, o·pi·at·ing.
  1. to subject to an opiate; stupefy.
  2. to dull or deaden.

Origin of opiate

1535–45; < Medieval Latin opiātus bringing sleep, equivalent to Latin opi(um) opium + -ātus -ate1
Related formsun·o·pi·at·ed, adjective

Synonyms for opiate

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2. drug. 3. anodyne. 5. sedative.

Antonyms for opiate

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for opiate

Contemporary Examples of opiate

Historical Examples of opiate

  • It was a luxury so penetrating and powerful that it affected him like an opiate.

    The Rock of Chickamauga

    Joseph A. Altsheler

  • But while there's life there's hope, you know; and meantime I'll send you an opiate to relieve the pain.

  • A strong emetic and a subsequent cathartic; and then an opiate and the bark.

    Zoonomia, Vol. II

    Erasmus Darwin

  • "I will prepare an opiate," said the physician in a whisper.

    The Light of Scarthey

    Egerton Castle

  • Her fried chicken and creamed gravy and mashed potatoes had been an opiate.

    The Gallery

    Roger Phillips Graham

British Dictionary definitions for opiate


noun (ˈəʊpɪɪt)
  1. any of various narcotic drugs, such as morphine and heroin, that act on opioid receptors
  2. any other narcotic or sedative drug
  3. something that soothes, deadens, or induces sleep
adjective (ˈəʊpɪɪt)
  1. containing or consisting of opium
  2. inducing relaxation; soporific
verb (ˈəʊpɪˌeɪt) (tr) rare
  1. to treat with an opiate
  2. to dull or deaden

Word Origin for opiate

C16: from Medieval Latin opiātus; from Latin opium poppy juice, opium
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 opiate

"medicine containing opium," early 15c., from Medieval Latin opiatus, from Latin opium (see opium). Figurative sense of "anything that dulls the feelings" is from 1640s. From 1540s in English as an adjective, "made with or containing opium."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

opiate in Medicine


pē-ĭt, -āt′]
  1. Any of various sedative narcotics that contain opium or one or more of its natural or synthetic derivatives.
  2. A drug, hormone, or other chemical substance that has sedative or narcotic effects similar to those containing opium or its derivatives.opioid
  1. Of or containing opium or any of its derivatives.
  2. Resembling opium or its derivatives in activity.
  3. Inducing sleep or sedation; soporific.
  1. To subject to the action of an opiate.
Related formsopi•ate (-ĭt, -āt′) adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.