Definition of heroin in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈherōən/


A highly addictive analgesic drug derived from morphine, often used illicitly as a narcotic producing euphoria.
  • Alternative name: diacetylmorphine; chemical formula: C17H17NO(C2H3O2)2.
Example sentences
  • Any person trying heroin or any addictive drug for the first time knows that it can hook you.
  • Caffeine is addictive and hooks you in the same way as amphetamines, cocaine and heroin.
  • Yes, the use of heroin and harder drugs has also risen steadily there over a similar period.
informal H, horse, skag, junk, sugar, China White, smack


Late 19th century: from German Heroin, from Latin heros 'hero' (because of its effects on the user's self-esteem).

  • The similarity in spelling between heroin and hero (Middle English) is not accidental. The name of the drug is a German word formed in the late 1890s from Latin heros ‘hero’, in reference to its effects, for the feelings of euphoria it can produce meant that in early tests users reported that they felt ‘heroic’. Hero itself in an early Greek word.

Words that rhyme with heroin


For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: her·o·in

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