a. Capable of preventing infection by inhibiting the growth of infectious agents.
b. Devoid of infectious agents; aseptic.
c. Of or associated with the use of antiseptics.
a. Devoid of enlivening or enriching qualities: "This is ... not at all lighthearted or amiable music. In fact, the tone is unremittingly sober and antiseptic" (Donal Henahan).
b. Free of disturbing or unpleasant features; sanitized: an antiseptic version of history.
A substance that prevents infection by inhibiting the growth of infectious agents.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.