Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • transitive verb To extract the flavor of by boiling.
  • transitive verb To make concentrated; boil down.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To prepare by boiling; digest in hot or boiling water; extract the strength or flavor of by boiling.
  • To digest in the stomach.
  • To warm as if by boiling; heat up; excite.
  • To concoct; devise.
  • Cooked; digested.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To prepare by boiling; to digest in hot or boiling water; to extract the strength or flavor of by boiling; to make an infusion of.
  • transitive verb To prepare by the heat of the stomach for assimilation; to digest; to concoct.
  • transitive verb rare To warm, strengthen, or invigorate, as if by boiling.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb cooking To make an infusion
  • verb cooking To reduce, or concentrate by boiling down

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb steep in hot water
  • verb be cooked until very little liquid is left
  • verb extract the essence of something by boiling it

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English decocten, to boil, from Latin dēcoquere, dēcoct-, to boil down or away : dē-, de- + coquere, to boil, to cook; see pekw- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Old French, from Latin decoquō ("I boil down"), from de- + coquō.

Examples

  • Pao-yü, on one hand, hastened to direct a servant to go and decoct them, and, on the other, he heaved a sigh.

    Hung Lou Meng

  • After 15 minutes, decoct one-third of the mash, bringing it slowly to a boil over 20 to 25 minutes.

    SECRETS FROM THE MASTER BREWERS

  • After 15 minutes, decoct one-third of the mash, bringing it slowly to a boil over 20 to 25 minutes.

    SECRETS FROM THE MASTER BREWERS

  • And to say the truth, remembering that Dr. Swinnerton himself never appeared to triturate or decoct or do anything else with the mysterious herbs, our old friend was inclined to imagine the weighty commendation of their virtues to have been the idly solemn utterance of mental aberration at the hour of death.

    The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 15, No. 87, January, 1865

  • Pao-yü, on one hand, hastened to direct a servant to go and decoct them, and, on the other, he heaved a sigh.

    Hung Lou Meng, Book II Or, the Dream of the Red Chamber, a Chinese Novel in Two Books

  • Take flower-de-luces, stalk, blossom, root, together; then decoct them over a slack fire; and with the liquid bathe your eyes several times a day; you will most certainly be cured of that weakness; but see that you purge first, and then go forward with the lotion.

    The Autobiography of Benvenuto Cellini

  • Take flower-de-luces, stalk, blossom, root, together; then decoct them over a slack fire; and with the liquid bathe your eyes several times a day; you will most certainly be cured of that weakness; but see that you purge first, and then go forward with the lotion.

    LVIII

  • I may decoct an essence in yonder furnace that will transmute the basest metal into gold.

    From Jest to Earnest

  • Dr. Swinnerton himself never appeared to triturate or decoct or do anything else with the mysterious herbs, our old friend was inclined to imagine the weighty commendation of their virtues to have been the idly solemn utterance of mental aberration at the hour of death.

    The Dolliver Romance

  • Mr. Trummer and Ms. Tierney have been trading legal papers since last year over ownership of the cocktail haunt, where bartenders in white lab coats decoct botanical-and-herb-infused elixirs from laboratory beakers.

    NYT > Home Page

Comments

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  • decoct it all boils down to essence

    December 29, 2006

  • In addition, decoct means to diminish, consume, waste (OED).

    February 12, 2012