[ noun, adjective oh-pee-it, -eyt; verb oh-pee-eyt ]
See synonyms for: opiateopiatedopiating on Thesaurus.com

  1. Biochemistry, Pharmacology. a drug containing opium or its derivatives, used in medicine for inducing sleep and relieving pain: The opium poppy yields morphine, codeine, and other opiates.

  2. Biochemistry, Pharmacology. any sedative, soporific, or narcotic: Back then, the country physician would concoct all sorts of opiates in a crude kitchen laboratory.

  1. anything that causes dullness or inaction or that soothes the feelings: His favorite opiate seems to be a six-pack in front of the TV.

  1. Biochemistry, Pharmacology. mixed or prepared with opium: Some opiate substances, such as thebaine, may be more toxic than narcotic.

  2. Biochemistry, Pharmacology. inducing sleep; soporific; narcotic: Subjects were given a variety of opiate teas over the course of a four-week study.

  1. causing dullness or inaction: The opiate effects of their droning reprimands were legendary.

verb (used with object),o·pi·at·ed, o·pi·at·ing.
  1. to subject to an opiate; stupefy: The violent patients were routinely opiated.

  2. to dull or deaden: This dreadful music is opiating my spirit.

Origin of opiate

First recorded in 1525–35; from Middle French, from Medieval Latin opiātus “bringing sleep,” equivalent to Latin opi(um) “poppy juice” + adjective suffix -ātus; see origin at opium, -ate1

Other words for opiate

Opposites for opiate

Other words from opiate

  • un·o·pi·at·ed, adjective

Words Nearby opiate

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use opiate in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for opiate


  1. any of various narcotic drugs, such as morphine and heroin, that act on opioid receptors

  2. any other narcotic or sedative drug

  1. something that soothes, deadens, or induces sleep

  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

Origin of 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