[ fi-zish-uh n ]
/ fɪˈzɪʃ ən /


a person who is legally qualified to practice medicine; doctor of medicine.
a person engaged in general medical practice, as distinguished from one specializing in surgery.
a person who is skilled in the art of healing.

Origin of physician

1175–1225; physic + -ian (see -ician); replacing Middle English fisicien < Old French

Related forms

phy·si·cian·ly, adjective

Can be confused

doctor physician Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for physician

British Dictionary definitions for physician


/ (fɪˈzɪʃən) /


a person legally qualified to practise medicine, esp one specializing in areas of treatment other than surgery; doctor of medicine
archaic any person who treats diseases; healer

Word Origin for physician

C13: from Old French fisicien, from fisique physic
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

Medicine definitions for physician


[ fĭ-zĭshən ]


A person licensed to practice medicine; a medical doctor.
A person who practices general medicine as distinct from surgery.

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