an acute, highly contagious disease caused by a poxvirus and characterized by prolonged fever, vomiting, and pustular eruptions that often left pitted scars, or pockmarks, when healed: eradicated in the 1970s
Origin of smallpoxso called to distinguish it from syphilis, the “great pox”
An acute, highly infectious, often fatal disease caused by a poxvirus and characterized by high fever and aches with subsequent widespread eruption of pimples that blister, produce pus, and form pockmarks. Smallpox was eradicated worldwide by 1979 as a result of numerous vaccination campaigns and exists only as a laboratory specimen. Also called variola .
Origin of smallpoxEarly Modern English small pockes small pustules ( as opposed to great pockes the great pox or syphilis ) from pockes pl. of pock ; see pock .
(usually uncountable, plural smallpoxes)