Etymology
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rectify (v.)

c. 1400, rectifien, "to cure, heal, remedy" (a bad or faulty condition); early 15c. "set (someone) straight in conduct or behavior;" late 15c., "correct an error, set (something) straight or right;" from Old French rectifier, literally "to make straight" (14c.), from Late Latin rectificare "make right, make straight," from Latin rectus "straight" (from PIE root *reg- "move in a straight line," with derivatives meaning "to direct in a straight line") + combining form of facere "to make" (from PIE root *dhe- "to set, put"). Sense of "remove impurities from a distillate" is from mid-15c. Related: Rectified; rectifying.

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treacle (n.)
mid-14c., "medicinal compound, antidote for poison," from Old French triacle "antidote, cure for snake-bite" (c. 1200), from Vulgar Latin *triacula, from Latin theriaca, from Greek theriake (antidotos) "antidote for poisonous wild animals," from fem. of theriakos "of a wild animal," from therion "wild animal," diminutive of ther (genitive theros) "wild animal," from PIE root *ghwer- "wild beast."

Sense of "molasses" is first recorded 1690s (the connection may be from the use of molasses as a laxative, or its use to disguise the bad taste of medicine); that of "anything too sweet or sentimental" is from 1771. Related: Treacly.
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charm (v.)

c. 1300, "to recite or cast a magic spell," from Old French charmer (13c.) "to enchant, to fill (someone) with desire (for something); to protect, cure, treat; to maltreat, harm," from Late Latin carminare, from Latin carmen "song, verse, enchantment, religious formula" (see charm (n.)). In Old French used alike of magical and non-magical activity. In English, "to win over by treating pleasingly, delight" from mid-15c.; weaker sense of "be highly pleasing" is by early 18c. Charmed (short for I am charmed) as a conventional reply to a greeting or meeting is attested by 1825.

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bedlam (n.)

"scene of mad confusion," 1660s, from colloquial pronunciation of "Hospital of Saint Mary of Bethlehem" in London, founded 1247 as a priory, mentioned as a hospital 1330 and as a lunatic hospital 1402; it was converted to a civic lunatic asylum on dissolution of the monasteries in 1547. It was spelled Bedlem in a will from 1418, and Betleem is recorded as a spelling of Bethlehem in Judea from 971. The proper name might be caught in transition in the title of John Davies' 1617 publication of humorous poetry, "Wits bedlam —where is had, whipping-cheer, to cure the mad."

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remedial (adj.)

1650s, "curing, relieving, affording a remedy," from Late Latin remedialis "healing, curing," from Latin remedium "a cure, remedy, medicine, antidote, that which restores health," from re-, here perhaps an intensive prefix (or perhaps literally, "again;" see re-), + mederi "to heal" (from PIE root *med- "take appropriate measures").

Educational sense of "concerned with improving skills of students not as proficient as their peers or as required" is by 1879. In reference to physical exercise or training to overcome muscular or postural deficiencies, by 1925. Related: Remedially.

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hellebore (n.)

late 14c., from Old French ellebore, from Latin elleborus, from Greek helleboros, the name given to various plants of both poisonous and medicinal qualities, reputed to cure madness; of uncertain origin. Perhaps literally "plant eaten by fawns," from Greek ellos/hellos "fawn" (from PIE *elno-, extended form of *el- (2) "red, brown," in animal and tree names; see elk) + bora "food of beasts," from bibroskein "to eat" (from PIE root *gwora- "food, devouring"). But Beekes writes, "The traditional etymology seems very doubtful; the word could well be non-IE, i.e. Pre-Greek." Related: Helleboric; helleboraceous.

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restore (v.)

c. 1300, restoren, "to give back," also, "to build up again, repair; renew, re-establish; free from the effects of sin; bring back to a former and better state," from Old French restorer, from Latin restaurare "repair, rebuild, renew." This is from re- "back, again" (see re-) + -staurare, not attested by itself but also in instaurare "to set up, establish; renew, restore," etc.,  from PIE root *sta- "to stand, make or be firm."

From late 14c. as "to cure, heal, bring back to a vigorous state;" of objects, beliefs, etc., "bring back to an original state or condition," 1670s. Related: Restored; restoring.

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amend (v.)
early 13c., "to free from faults, rectify," from Old French amender "correct, set right, make better, improve" (12c.), from Latin emendare "to correct, free from fault," from ex "out" (see ex-) + menda "fault, blemish," from PIE root *mend- "physical defect, fault" (source also of Sanskrit minda "physical blemish," Old Irish mennar "stain, blemish," Welsh mann "sign, mark").

The spelling with a- is unusual but early and also is found in Provençal and Italian. In English it has been supplanted in senses of "repair; cure" by its shortened offspring mend (v.). Meaning "to add to legislation" (ostensibly to correct or improve it) is recorded from 1777. Related: Amended; amending.
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hypochondriasis (n.)

disease evidenced by lowness of spirits, sluggishness, indolence, loss of interest in amusements, a wish to be alone, etc., 1765, from hypochondria in its older sense of "melancholy without cause," treated here as a disorder of the body and given the medical ending -osis to denote "a state of disease." The definitions of hypochondria then expanded to include this sense and that has become the usual word for it.

To call the Hypochondriaſis a fanciful malady, is ignorant and cruel. It is a real, and a ſad diſeaſe : an obſtruction of the ſpleen by thickened and diſtempered blood ; extending itſelf often to the liver, and other parts ; and unhappily is in England very frequent : phyſick ſcarce knows one more fertile in ill ; or more difficult of cure. [J. Hill, M.D., "Hypochondriasis," London, 1766]
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medicine (n.)

c. 1200, "medical treatment, cure, healing," also (early 14c.) "substance used in treatment of a disease, medicinal potion or plaster," also used figuratively of spiritual remedies, from Old French medecine (Modern French médicine) "medicine, art of healing, cure, treatment, potion" and directly from Latin medicina "the healing art, medicine; a remedy," also used figuratively.

This is perhaps originally ars medicina "the medical art," from fem. of medicinus (adj.) "of a doctor," from medicus "a physician" (from PIE root *med- "take appropriate measures"); though OED says evidence for this path is wanting and suggests derivation directly from medicus. The sense of "practice, theory, or study of curing, alleviating, or preventing disease in humans" is from mid-14c.

The figurative phrase take (one's) medicine "submit to something disagreeable" is recorded by 1865; that of dose of (one's) own medicine is by 1894. Medicine show "traveling show meant to attract a crowd so patent medicine can be sold to them" is American English, 1938. Medicine ball "stuffed leather ball used for exercise" is from 1889.

It is called a "medicine ball" and it got that title from Prof. [Robert J.] Roberts, now of Springfield, whose fame is widespread, and whose bright and peculiar dictionary of terms for his prescription department in physical culture is taught in every first-class conducted Y.M.C.A. gymnasium in America. Prof. Roberts calls it a "medicine ball" because playful exercise with it invigorates the body, promotes digestion, and restores and preserves one's health. [Scientific American Supplement, March 16, 1889]
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