American Dictionary of the English Language

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PREVENT'IVE, adjective Tending to hinder; hindering the access of; as a medicine preventive of disease.

PREVENT'IVE, noun That which prevents; that which intercepts the access or approach of. Temperance and exercise are excellent preventives of debility and languor.

1. An antidote previously taken. A medicine may be taken as a preventive of disease.