One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1‘Rachel patted his hand to soothe him’
calm, calm down, quiet, pacify, subdue, settle, settle down, comfort, hush, lull, tranquillize, appease, win over, conciliate, make peace with, mollify, propitiate
British quieten, quieten down
2‘it contains a mild local anaesthetic to soothe the pain’
alleviate, ease, relieve, take the edge off, assuage, allay, dull, soften, lessen, moderate, temper, palliate, mitigate, diminish, decrease, blunt, deaden, abate
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