1. A person trained and licensed to practice medicine; one who has a Doctor of Medicine or a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree.
2. Archaic A person who practices general medicine as distinct from surgery.
3. A person who heals or exerts a healing influence.
[Middle English fisicien, from Old French, from fisique, medical science; see PHYSIC.]
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.