tranquilize (tranquilizes, present participle tranquilizing; past and past participle tranquilized)

  1. (transitive) To calm (a person or animal) or put them to sleep using a drug.
    The escaped lion was finally tracked down, tranquilized, and safely returned to the zoo.
    Synonyms: sedate#Verb
    • 1962, Ken Kesey, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, New York: Dial, p. 255,
      Miss Ratched shall line us all against the wall, where we’ll face the terrible maw of a muzzle-loading shotgun which she has loaded with Miltowns! Thorazines! Libriums! Stelazines! And with a wave of her sword, blooie! Tranquilize all of us completely out of existence.
    • 1962, Rachel Carson, Silent Spring, Boston: Houghton Mifflin, Chapter 2, p. 13,
      When the public protests, confronted with some obvious evidence of damaging results of pesticide applications, it is fed little tranquilizing pills of half truth.
  2. (transitive, now, literary) To make (something or someone) tranquil.
    Synonyms: appease, calm, pacify
    • 1779, Frances Burney, Evelina, Dublin: Price, Corcoran et al., Volume 2, Letter 14, p. 87,
      […] with words of sweetest kindness and consolation, he soothed and tranquilised me.
    • 1818, Mary Shelley, Frankenstein, Letter 1,
      […] I feel my heart glow with an enthusiasm which elevates me to heaven, for nothing contributes so much to tranquillize the mind as a steady purpose,—a point on which the soul may fix its intellectual eye.
    • 1855, Frederick Douglass, My Bondage and My Freedom, Chapter 13,
      This threat, the reader may well suppose, was not very tranquilizing to my feelings.
    • 1865, Sir George Trevelyan, 2nd Baronet, Siege of Cawnpore, London: Macmillan, Chapter 5, p. 322,
      The column was placed under the orders of Major Renaud, who pushed up the road; fighting as occasion offered; tranquillizing the country by the very simple expedient of hanging everybody who showed signs of insubordination […]
    • 1931, E. F. Benson, Mapp and Lucia, Chapter 4,
      Supported by an impregnable sense of justice but still dangerously fuming, Lucia went back to her garden-room, to tranquillize herself with an hour’s practice on the new piano.
    • 1995, Rohinton Mistry, A Fine Balance, Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, Chapter 11, p. 497,
      But time had tranquillized Dina’s worries about the landlord.
  3. (intransitive, obsolete, rare) To become tranquil.
    Synonyms: calm down, relax
    • 1748, Samuel Richardson, Clarissa, London, Volume 5, Letter 1, p. 11,
      Seest thou not, that this unseasonable gravity is admitted to quell the palpitations of this unmanageable heart? But still it will go on with its boundings. I’ll try, as I ride in my chariot, to tranquillize.
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