English

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Etymology

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From Ancient Greek παραλυτικός (paralutikós, paralyzed).

Pronunciation

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Noun

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paralytic (plural paralytics)

  1. Someone suffering from paralysis.
    • 1885, Richard F. Burton, The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night:
      Quoth I to myself, "Haply this Shaykh is of those who were wrecked in the ship and hath made his way to this island." So I drew near to him and saluted him, and he returned my salam by signs, but spoke not; and I said to him, "O nuncle mine, what causeth thee to sit here?" He shook his head and moaned and signed to me with his hand as who should say, "Take me on thy shoulders and carry me to the other side of the well-channel." And quoth I in my mind, "I will deal kindly with him and do what he desireth; it may be I shall win me a reward in Heaven for he may be a paralytic."
  2. A drug that produces paralysis.
    • 2010, John J. Marini, Critical Care Medicine: The Essentials, page 312:
      For example, use of paralytics in morbidly obese patients or those with spinal instability can precipitate complete upper airway obstruction.

Quotations

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Translations

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Adjective

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paralytic (comparative more paralytic, superlative most paralytic)

  1. Affected by paralysis; paralysed.
    • 1718, Mat[thew] Prior, “Solomon on the Vanity of the World. A Poem in Three Books.”, in Poems on Several Occasions, London: [] Jacob Tonson [], and John Barber [], →OCLC, (please specify the page):
      the cold, shaking, paralytic hand
  2. Pertaining to paralysis.
  3. (UK, Australia, Ireland, slang) Very drunk.
    • 1996 August 18, Ben McCulloch, “Para-olympics”, in aus.jokes[1] (Usenet):
      Are the para-olympics the events in which the olympians, having finished their events in the normal olympics, go out and get pissed and then compete again?
      ie: the para-olympics become the paralytic olympics.
    • 1999 January 3, David McLoughlin, “Gundagai - Last Use Of Line?”, in aus.rail[2] (Usenet):
      I'm amazed I survived so much drunken driving. Once he was so paralytic he even made me drive, and I was about 14 and barely able to see above the steering wheel. At least it was an automatic.
    • 2001 May 24, Peter Ryan, “ablett no from hall of fame”, in aus.sport.aussie-rules[3] (Usenet):
      He hasn't even been openly accused of anything bar drinking himself paralytic at a time that, in hindsight, was inconvenient.
    • 2002 April 16, C e r b e r u s - T h e D o g O f H e l l, “On the Isle of Man.”, in free.jokes[4] (Usenet):
      On returning to his friends at the bar he remarked " there's a fellow in the jaxx and he's just paralytic. He must be heading for the boat and didn't quite make it."

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Derived terms

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