Definition of cathartic in English:


Syllabification: ca·thar·tic
Pronunciation: /kəˈTHärtik


  • 1Providing psychological relief through the open expression of strong emotions; causing catharsis: crying is a cathartic release
    More example sentences
    • We were witnessing the cathartic expression of raw experience that could be the foundation of a profoundly moving work and perhaps one day it will.
    • Perhaps this is why the film is best seen in a crowded theatre, where the infectiousness of cathartic emotion can have full play.
    • Gullible by nature, they are easily swayed by catchy slogans and start seeking cathartic relief in communal frenzy.
  • 2 Medicine (Chiefly of a drug) purgative.
    More example sentences
    • Participants 50 years and older with an indication for colonoscopy underwent cathartic preparation of the colon before CTC followed by regular colonoscopy.
    • The cathartic dose of sorbitol is 20 to 50 grams.
    • The third type of intervention is administration of cathartic agents to increase gastrointestinal motility and hasten the expulsion of the toxin.


Medicine Back to top  
  • A purgative drug.
    More example sentences
    • Other laxatives and cathartics are available.
    • Mercury is used in the manufacture of skin medicine, dental amalgam, plastics, cathartics, paints, fungicides, cosmetics, and scientific instruments.
    • There is no evidence that cathartics reduce absorption or toxicity, however.



More example sentences
  • There are beautiful quiet passages (including a surprisingly restrained Jaco solo) and tracks that just build and build until they just explode cathartically.
  • I at least hope I have convinced you that my mom is a headcase and look forward to cathartically yet necessarily reviewing the insanity of my father next Saturday.
  • The secret to a successful relocation is knowing what to honestly expect so you can laugh cathartically when the inevitable bizarre scenarios emerge.


early 17th century (in medical use): via late Latin from Greek kathartikos, from katharsis 'cleansing' (see catharsis).

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Word of the day milord
Pronunciation: mɪˈlɔːd
used to address an English nobleman