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motherwort

[muhth-er-wurt, -wawrt]
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noun
  1. a European plant, Leonorus cardiaca, of the mint family, an introduced weed in the U.S., having cut leaves with a whorl of lavender flowers in the axils.

Origin of motherwort

1350–1400; Middle English moderwort (see mother1, wort2), so called because believed helpful for diseases of the womb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for motherwort

Historical Examples

  • Page 383, "motherworth and Virginia creeper" was changed to read "motherwort and Virginia creeper."

    Cornell Nature-Study Leaflets

    Various

  • Thus the people ascribe to the Motherwort the property of prolonging life.


British Dictionary definitions for motherwort

motherwort

noun
  1. any of several plants of the Eurasian genus Leonurus, esp L. cardiaca, having divided leaves and clusters of small purple or pink flowers: family Lamiaceae (labiates)

Word Origin

C14: so named because it was thought to be beneficial in uterine disorders
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