- a European plant, Viscum album, having yellowish flowers and white berries, growing parasitically on various trees, used in Christmas decorations.
- any of several other related, similar plants, as Phoradendron serotinum, of the U.S.: the state flower of Oklahoma.
Origin of mistletoe
Examples from the Web for mistletoe
Eventually, the mistletoe bush grows, blooms, and forms berries, and the cycle begins anew.
Mistletoe is basically a vampire—but one of those an anti-hero type vampires.
In a dramatic twist on mistletoe reproduction, their seeds explode, literally.
“Mistletoe infections can be a symptom of larger problems,” notes Shaw.
Mistletoes infections can kill individual trees and stands of trees, and most mistletoe species attack specific tree species.
Loki stood by him and directed his hand as Hodur threw the mistletoe.Classic Myths
Mary Catherine Judd
Girls, although they be ladies, are kissed under the mistletoe.Christmas: Its Origin and Associations
William Francis Dawson
And he said, in a very low voice, 'I didn't dare to kiss you under the mistletoe.'Four Days
"It's like the chest in the 'Mistletoe Bough,'" cried Blanche.Hunter's Marjory
Margaret Bruce Clarke
The pictures on the walls were covered with holly and mistletoe.
- a Eurasian evergreen shrub, Viscum album, with leathery leaves, yellowish flowers, and waxy white berries: grows as a partial parasite on various trees: used as a Christmas decoration: family Viscaceae
- any of several similar and related American plants in the families Loranthaceae or Viscaceae, esp Phoradendron flavescens
- mistletoe cactus an epiphytic cactus, Rhipsalis cassytha, that grows in tropical America
Word Origin and History for mistletoe
Old English mistiltan, from mistel "mistletoe" (see missel) + tan "twig." Cf. Old Norse mistilteinn, Norwegian misteltein, Danish mistelten. The second element is cognate with Old Saxon and Old Frisian ten, Old Norse teinn, Dutch teen, Old High German zein, Gothic tains "twig." Venerated by the Druids; the custom of hanging it at Christmas and kissing under it is mentioned by Washington Irving.