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lemon balm

noun
1.
See under balm (def 5).
Origin of lemon balm
1885-1890
First recorded in 1885-90

balm

[bahm] /bɑm/
noun
1.
any of various oily, fragrant, resinous substances, often of medicinal value, exuding from certain plants, especially tropical trees of the genus Commiphora.
2.
a plant or tree yielding such a substance.
3.
any aromatic or fragrant ointment.
4.
aromatic fragrance; sweet odor:
the balm of orange blossoms.
5.
any of various aromatic plants of the mint family, especially those of the genus Melissa, as M. officinalis (lemon balm) having ovate lemon-scented leaves used as a seasoning.
6.
anything that heals, soothes, or mitigates pain:
the balm of friendship in troubled times.
Origin
1175-1225; Middle English basme, ba(u)me < Anglo-French basme, bal(s)me, ba(u)me; Old French < Latin balsamum balsam; with orthographic l pedantically restored
Related forms
balmlike, adjective
Can be confused
balm, bomb.
Synonyms
3. salve, unguent, lotion, emollient.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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British Dictionary definitions for lemon balm

lemon balm

noun
1.
the full name of balm (sense 5)

balm

/bɑːm/
noun
1.
any of various oily aromatic resinous substances obtained from certain tropical trees and used for healing and soothing See also balsam (sense 1)
2.
any plant yielding such a substance, esp the balm of Gilead
3.
something comforting or soothing: soft music is a balm
4.
any aromatic or oily substance used for healing or soothing
5.
Also called lemon balm. an aromatic Eurasian herbaceous plant, Melissa officinalis, having clusters of small fragrant white two-lipped flowers: family Lamiaceae (labiates)
6.
a pleasant odour
Derived Forms
balmlike, adjective
Word Origin
C13: from Old French basme, from Latin balsamumbalsam
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for lemon balm

balm

n.

early 13c., basme, aromatic substance made from resins and oils, from Old French basme (Modern French baume), from Latin balsamum, from Greek balsamon "balsam," from Hebrew basam "spice," related to Aramaic busma, Arabic basham "balsam, spice, perfume."

Spelling refashioned 15c.-16c. on Latin model. Sense of "healing or soothing influence" (1540s) is from aromatic preparations from balsam (see balsam). Biblical Balm of Gilead, however, began with Coverdale; the Hebrew word there is tsori, which was rendered in Septuagint and Vulgate as "resin" (Greek rhetine, Latin resina).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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lemon balm in Medicine

balm (bäm)
n.

  1. An aromatic salve or oil.

  2. A soothing, healing, or comforting agent.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Word Value for lemon

7
10
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