<medicine> Strictly, a disease by pustules or eruptions of any kind, but chiefly or wholly restricted to three or four diseases, the smallpox, the chicken pox, and the vaccine and the venereal diseases.

Pox, when used without an epithet, as in imprecations, formerly signified smallpox; but it now signifies syphilis.

Origin: For pocks, OE. Pokkes. See Pock. It is plural in form but is used as a singular.

(01 Mar 1998)

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