Definition of specific

spe`cif´ic   Pronunciation: spė`sĭf´ĭk
a.1.Of or pertaining to a species; characterizing or constituting a species; possessing the peculiar property or properties of a thing which constitute its species, and distinguish it from other things; as, the specific form of an animal or a plant; the specific qualities of a drug; the specific distinction between virtue and vice.
Specific difference is that primary attribute which distinguishes each species from one another.
- I. Watts.
2.Specifying; definite, or making definite; limited; precise; discriminating; as, a specific statement.
3.(Med.) Exerting a peculiar influence over any part of the body; preventing or curing disease by a peculiar adaptation, and not on general principles; as, quinine is a specific medicine in cases of malaria.
In fact, all medicines will be found specific in the perfection of the science.
- Coleridge.
Specific character
(Nat. Hist.) a characteristic or characteristics distinguishing one species from every other species of the same genus.
Specific disease
a - (Med.) A disease which produces a determinate definite effect upon the blood and tissues or upon some special tissue
b - A disease which is itself uniformly produced by a definite and peculiar poison or organism.
Specific duty
(Com.) See under Duty.
Specific gravity
(Physics) See under Gravity.
Specific heat
(Physics) the quantity of heat required to raise the temperature of a body one degree, taking as the unit of measure the quantity required to raise the same weight of water from zero to one degree; thus, the specific heat of mercury is 0.033, that of water being 1.000.
Specific inductive capacity
(Physics) the effect of a dielectric body in producing static electric induction as compared with that of some other body or bodies referred to as a standard.
Specific legacy
(Law) a bequest of a particular thing, as of a particular animal or piece of furniture, specified and distinguished from all others.
Specific name
(Nat. Hist.) the name which, appended to the name of the genus, constitutes the distinctive name of the species; - originally applied by Linnæus to the essential character of the species, or the essential difference. The present specific name he at first called the trivial name.
- Wharton.
Specific performance
(Law) the peformance of a contract or agreement as decreed by a court of equity.
n.1.(Med.) A specific remedy. See Specific, a., 3.
His parents were weak enough to believe that the royal touch was a specific for this malady.
- Macaulay.
2.Anything having peculiar adaption to the purpose to which it is applied.

Related Words

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Special orders
Special partner
Special partnership
Special plea in bar
Special pleader
Special pleading
Special property
Special session
Special statute
Special verdict
Specific character
Specific disease
Specific duty
Specific gravity
Specific heat
Specific heat of a substance
Specific inductive capacity
Specific legacy
Specific name
Specific performance
Specific volume
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