verb (used with object)
Origin of poison
Synonyms for poison
Examples from the Web for poisoner
Contemporary Examples of poisoner
Modern historians have freed Alexander's daughter from her popular but mistaken image as a poisoner and bedsheet diplomat.The Borgias' Entertaining Excess
May 21, 2011
Historical Examples of poisoner
"It's not enough to have—have her die, but I must be her poisoner," he said mechanically.Garrison's Finish
W. B. M. Ferguson
All the world has heard of me, from the Havannah to Guajuaqualla, as the poisoner and the forger!Confessions Of Con Cregan
Charles James Lever
The first wife who bore my name was my accomplice, the second was a poisoner.The Son of Monte-Cristo, Volume I (of 2)
Alexandre Dumas pre
Mallecho is supposed to be corrupted from the Spanish Malechor, which means a poisoner.Hamlet
Thus darkly, through the darkness, went the Poisoner to her prey.Lucretia, Complete
Word Origin for poison
late 14c., agent noun from poison (v.). OED notes that in Australia and New Zealand it was used for "A cook, esp. for large numbers."
c.1200, "a deadly potion or substance," also figuratively, from Old French poison, puison (12c., Modern French poison) "a drink," especially a medical drink, later "a (magic) potion, poisonous drink" (14c.), from Latin potionem (nominative potio) "a drinking, a drink," also "poisonous drink" (Cicero), from potare "to drink" (see potion).
For form evolution from Latin to French, cf. raison from rationem. The Latin word also is the source of Old Spanish pozon, Italian pozione, Spanish pocion. The more usual Indo-European word for this is represented in English by virus. The Old English word was ator (see attercop) or lybb. Slang sense of "alcoholic drink" first attested 1805, American English.
For sense evolution, cf. Old French enerber, enherber "to kill with poisonous plants." In many Germanic languages "poison" is named by a word equivalent to English gift (cf. Old High German gift, German Gift, Danish and Swedish gift; Dutch gift, vergift). This shift might have been partly euphemistic, partly by influence of Greek dosis "a portion prescribed," literally "a giving," used by Galen and other Greek physicians to mean an amount of medicine (see dose (n.)).
Figuratively from late 15c.; of persons by 1910. As an adjective from 1520s; with plant names from 18c. Poison ivy first recorded 1784; poison oak is from 1743. Poison gas first recorded 1915. Poison-pen (letter) popularized 1913 by a notorious criminal case in Pennsylvania, U.S.; the phrase dates to 1898.
"to give poison to; kill with poison," c.1300, from Old French poisonner "to give to drink," and directly from poison (n.). Figuratively from late 14c. Related: Poisoned; poisoning.
In addition to the idiom beginning with poison
, also see
- one man's meat is another man's poison