• (UK) IPA(key): /ˈnɔːzɪəs/, /ˈnɔːsɪəs/
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  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈnɔːʃəs/
  • (Canada) IPA(key): /ˈnɑːʃəs/


From Latin nauseōsus, corresponding synchronically to nausea +‎ -ous.


nauseous (comparative more nauseous, superlative most nauseous)

  1. Causing nausea; sickening or disgusting.
    • 1819, Lord Byron, Don Juan, I:
      And then what proper person can be partial / To all those nauseous epigrams of Martial?
  2. (sometimes proscribed) Afflicted with nausea; sick.
    • 1848, Samuel Hahnemann, The Chronic Diseases, Their Specific Nature and Their Homeopathic Treatment: Antipsoric Remedies, Volume 2:
      After he had scarcely eaten enough, he felt nauseous; but nausea ceased as soon as he stopped eating entirely, …
    • 1878, The North American Journal of Homeopathy, Volume 27:
      [] during stretching the patient felt nauseous
    • 2010, Tom Smith, The Guardian, 4 Sep 2010:
      Is it a myth that you shouldn't drink alcohol while taking antibiotics? I often do and haven't felt remotely nauseous.

Usage notesEdit

Some state that nauseous should be used as synonymous with nauseating. AHD4 notes that that in common usage, nauseous is synonymous with nauseated. OED goes further, tagging its "nauseated" usage as "Orig[inally] U.S.", but demoted its "nauseating" usage to "literary". OED also notes that the original (now obsolete) sense of the word in English was "inclined to sickness or nausea; squeamish". Curiously, this oldest seventeenth-century meaning (inclined to nausea), while distinct from the disputed twentieth-century usage (afflicted by nausea), more closely resembles the latter than it does the prescribed meaning (causing nausea).



The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

See alsoEdit