[ sop-uh-rif-ik, soh-puh- ]
/ ˌsɒp əˈrɪf ɪk, ˌsoʊ pə- /


causing or tending to cause sleep.
pertaining to or characterized by sleep or sleepiness; sleepy; drowsy.


something that causes sleep, as a medicine or drug.

Nearby words

  1. sophronia,
  2. sophrosyne,
  3. sophy,
  4. sopor,
  5. soporiferous,
  6. soporose,
  7. soporous,
  8. sopping,
  9. soppy,
  10. sopranino

Origin of soporific

1655–65; < Latin sopor sopor + -i- + -fic; compare French soporifique

Related formssop·o·rif·i·cal·ly, adverban·ti·sop·o·rif·ic, adjective, nounnon·sop·or·if·ic, adjective, nounun·sop·o·rif·ic, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for soporific

British Dictionary definitions for soporific


/ (ˌsɒpəˈrɪfɪk) /

adjective Also: archaic soporiferous

inducing sleep
drowsy; sleepy


a drug or other agent that induces sleep
Derived Formssoporifically, adverb

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 soporific



"tending to produce sleep," 1680s, from French soporifique (17c.), formed in French from Latin sopor (genitive soporis) "deep sleep" (see sopor). As a noun from 1722. Earlier as an adjective was soporiferous (1580s as "characterized by excessive sleep," c.1600 as "soporific").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for soporific


[ sŏp′ə-rĭfĭk, sō′pə- ]


Inducing or tending to induce sleep.
Sleepy; drowsy.

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