1. [syn: panacea, nostrum, catholicon, cure-all]
2. patent medicine whose efficacy is questionable;
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Nostrum \Nos"trum\ (-tr[u^]m), n.; pl. Nostrums (-tr[u^]mz).
[Neut. sing. of L. noster ours, fr. nos we. See Us.]
1. A medicine, the ingredients of which are kept secret for
the purpose of restricting the profits of sale to the
inventor or proprietor; a quack medicine.
2. Any scheme or device proposed by a quack.
The incentives of agitators, the arts of impostors
and the nostrums of quacks. --Brougham.
3. Any scheme asserted to solve a problem, but with no
objective basis for belief in its effectiveness; esp., in
politics, a scheme or proposal likely to prove popular
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):
n 1: hypothetical remedy for all ills or diseases; once sought
by the alchemists [syn: panacea, nostrum, catholicon,
2: patent medicine whose efficacy is questionable