[ poht-n-see ]
/ ˈpoʊt n si /

noun, plural po·ten·cies for 4–6.

the state or quality of being potent.
power; authority.
efficacy; effectiveness; strength.
capacity to be, become, or develop; potentiality.
a person or thing exerting power or influence.
Mathematics. cardinal number(def 2).
Also potence.

Origin of potency

From the Latin word potentia, dating back to 1530–40. See potent1, -ency


o·ver·po·ten·cy, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Examples from the Web for potency

British Dictionary definitions for potency



/ (ˈpəʊtənsɪ) /

noun plural -tencies or -tences

the state or quality of being potent
latent or inherent capacity for growth or development

Word Origin for potency

C16: from Latin potentia power, from posse to be able
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

Medical definitions for potency

[ pōtn-sē ]


The quality or condition of being potent.
The pharmacological activity of a compound.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.