Share this entry

intoxicate Line breaks: in¦toxi|cate
Pronunciation: /ɪnˈtɒksɪkeɪt/

Definition of intoxicate in English:


1 [with object] (usually as adjective intoxicated) (Of alcoholic drink or a drug) cause (someone) to lose control of their faculties or behaviour: he was charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated
More example sentences
  • We don't allow people into sessions if they are intoxicated by alcohol or drugs.
  • The person is intoxicated through alcohol or drugs
  • Kids who abuse inhalants often look and act as if they're intoxicated from drinking alcohol.
inebriate, make drunk, make intoxicated, make inebriated;
befuddle, fuddle, stupefy, go to someone's head, make someone's head spin
informalmake legless, make woozy
Scottish informalfou
North American informalloaded, trashed, out of one's gourd, blitzed, ripped
US informaljacked
British vulgar slangpissed, rat-arsed, arseholed
British informal, , offensivemonged, monged out
informal, , datedin one's cups, lit up
archaicsotted, foxed, screwed
rarecrapulent, crapulous, bibulous, ebriate
1.1Excite or exhilarate (someone): he became intoxicated with his own power
More example sentences
  • The excitement and anticipation of the opportunity intoxicated him.
  • When she was certain that the embrace intoxicated him enough, she moved quickly and grasped the knife from his belt and pulled away harshly.
  • Language intoxicated Vijayan; he delighted in the rhythms of Malayalam and its versatility in evoking the many moods of native landscapes and feeling.
exhilarate, thrill, elate, delight, captivate, enthral, entrance, enrapture, invigorate, animate, enliven, excite, stir, rouse, move, inspire, inflame, electrify;
fire with enthusiasm, fire someone's imagination
informalgive someone a buzz, give someone a kick, bowl over, tickle someone pink
North American informalgive someone a charge
2 archaic Poison (someone).


Late Middle English (in the sense 'poison'): from medieval Latin intoxicare, from in- 'into' + toxicare 'to poison', from Latin toxicum (see toxic).

  • toxic from mid 17th century:

    Toxic is from medieval Latin toxicus ‘poisoned’: this comes from the Greek phrase toxikon (pharmakon) ‘(poison for) arrows’, from toxon ‘bow’. Intoxicate (Late Middle English) comes from the related toxicum ‘a poison’. The association with alcohol is found from the late 16th century.

Words that rhyme with intoxicate

desiccate • masticate

Definition of intoxicate in:

Share this entry


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources