Definition of ethical in English:


Line breaks: eth|ic¦al
Pronunciation: /ˈɛθɪk(ə)l


  • 2 [attributive] (Of a medicine) legally available only on a doctor’s prescription and usually not advertised to the general public: all types of drugs, including ethical drugs and over-the-counter pharmaceuticals
    More example sentences
    • The new opportunities that this offers to the pharmaceutical industry mean that, if they are to be fully realized, companies' future strategies will need to be orientated not only around the key area of ethical drugs but also around the potential long-term role of over-the-counter sales.
    • Early returns from a survey now going on in San Francisco indicate that use of ethical drugs is indeed more common in better educated and higher income groups.



Pronunciation: /-ˈkalɪti/
More example sentences
  • As man has sought to quench his thirst for knowledge, lines of ethicality have been drawn to preserve the integrity of science, and provide a framework from which man can improve upon the quality of human life.
  • More recent conflicts like the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the invasion of Grenada, and the Gulf war have made people analyze the ethicality behind the fighting.
  • Such research would be valuable and should examine both the effectiveness of fear appeals in ads as well as perceptions of the ethicality of these tactics.


is capitalism ethically justifiable?
More example sentences
  • Although acting under duress does not make the consequences of the act ethically justifiable, it is often a reality.
  • Are we so naive we cannot see this is ethically and morally wrong?
  • There may occasionally be a situation where a decision is ethically correct but morally wrong.

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