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From Late Latin lenitivus, from Latin lenitus.


lenitive (comparative more lenitive, superlative most lenitive)

  1. Analgesic, able to reduce pain or suffering.
  2. Laxative; easing the bowels.
  3. (of a person) Mild; gentle.


lenitive (plural lenitives)

  1. An analgesic or other source of relief from pain
    • 1688, David Hume, The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol. I, Part E[1]:
      It is now full time to free him from all these necessities, and to apply cordials and lenitives, after those severities which have already had their full course against him.
    • 1825, Samuel Johnson, The Works of Samuel Johnson in Nine Volumes[2]:
      Upon the whole, as the author seems to share all the common miseries of life, he appears to partake likewise of its lenitives and abatements.
    • 1899, Alexander Pope, The Iliad of Homer[3]:
      Their pain soft arts of pharmacy can ease, Thy breast alone no lenitives appease.
  2. A laxative.




  1. feminine plural of lenitivo