V2 Vocabulary Building Dictionary



Definition: hypothetical cure-all for illness and suffering

Synonyms: cure-all, elixir, relief, remedy, solution, aid

Antonyms: toxin, corruption, poison

Tips: Panacea is derived from the Greek panakeia, which means "cure-all." Since there's no such thing as a cure-all, the word panacea is often used facetiously, whenever talking about some solution that will supposedly solve all the major problems. For a memory trick for panacea, think of echinacea (same ending), which was long believed to be a miracle, immune-boosting herb that would prevent you from getting sick, but was later found to have no beneficial effect on the immune system. You may hear the term panacea in the phrase, "a panacea for all ills."

Usage Examples:

The politician stressed that the proposed bill should not be considered a panacea, but that it was a step toward fixing the problem. (cure-all, remedy)

The drug's claims are so outrageous, you'd think it was the panacea for everything. (remedy)

The proposed solution was only a panacea and really did nothing to address the problem. (elixir, supposed cure-all)

My sister thought that exercise was a panacea for all her problems and went for a run whenever anything upset her. (relief, solution)

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