1. a person who follows an empirical method.
  2. a quack; charlatan.


  1. empirical.


  1. a person who relies on empirical methods
  2. a medical quack; charlatan


  1. a variant of empirical

c.1600, from Latin empiricus “a physician guided by experience,” from Greek empeirikos “experienced,” from empeiria “experience,” from empeiros “skilled,” from en “in” (see en- (2)) + peira “trial, experiment,” from PIE *per- “to try, risk.” Originally a school of ancient physicians who based their practice on experience rather than theory. Earlier as a noun (1540s) in reference to the sect, and earliest (1520s) in a sense “quack doctor” which was in frequent use 16c.-19c.


  1. One who is guided by practical experience rather than precepts or theory.
  2. An unqualified or dishonest practitioner; a charlatan.


  1. Empirical.
  2. Relating to a school of ancient Greek medicine in which a physician relied on experience and precedent in the observation and treatment of disease, and on analogical reasoning in discovering new diseases.

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