American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A medicine whose effectiveness is unproved and whose ingredients are usually secret; a quack remedy.
- n. A favorite but usually ineffective remedy for problems or evils.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A medicine the ingredients of which, and the method of compounding them, are kept secret, for the purpose of restricting the profits of sale to the inventor or proprietor; especially, a quack medicine.
- n. Hence Any scheme or device of a quack or charlatan.
- n. A medicine or remedy in conventional use which has not been proven to have any desirable medical effects.
- n. An ineffective but favorite remedy for a problem, usually involving political action.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. A medicine, the ingredients of which are kept secret for the purpose of restricting the profits of sale to the inventor or proprietor; a quack medicine.
- n. Any scheme or device proposed by a quack.
- n. Any scheme asserted to solve a problem, but with no objective basis for belief in its effectiveness; esp., in politics, a scheme or proposal likely to prove popular with voters.
- n. hypothetical remedy for all ills or diseases; once sought by the alchemists
- n. patent medicine whose efficacy is questionable
- From Latin nostrum ("ours"), nominative neuter of noster ("our, ours"). (Wiktionary)
- From Latin nostrum (remedium), our (remedy), neuter of noster; see nes-2 in Indo-European roots. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“At the end of the day, discounting products is nothing more than a short-term nostrum for a problem that is much more severe and will benefit no one in the end if it isn't accompanied by making sure that there were patients to inject these products into.”
“Jail is the conventional and time-honored nostrum, which is administered with a glow of moral self-esteem, and no more thought about it.”
“The nostrum, in fact truism, that countries cannot really devalue their way to prosperity is important to bear in mind.”
“None of this is surprising, though it does dismantle the liberal nostrum that a new entitlement will somehow reduce health spending.”
“May I take this opportunity to wish all NLM readers a very happy and blessed Easter, in the words of the EF Martyrology: Hac die, quam fecit Dominus, Solemnitas solemnitatum, et Pascha nostrum: Resurrectio Salvatoris nostri Jesu Christi secundum carnem.”
“It was said to be a nostrum for "haemorrhage, dysentery, diarrohea, poisoning, plague, and nosebleeds.”
“Privatization" is a crowd-pleasing nostrum for public officials seeking to shed the budgetary cost of programs and services that they nevertheless know to be a public responsibility.”
“It's a nostrum of medical education that the patient's history provides the diagnosis ninety per cent of the time, the examination nine percent of the time, and lab tests one per cent of the time.”
“The conservative nostrum of "personal responsibility" is, thus, being taken to a whole new extreme.”
“There were so many changes to measure that Google discarded the traditional scientific nostrum that only one experiment should be conducted at a time, with all variables except the one tested being exactly the same in the control group and the experimental group.”
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