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[mur] /mɜr/
an aromatic resinous exudation from certain plants of the genus Myrrhis, especially M. odorata, a small spiny tree: used for incense, perfume, etc.
Origin of myrrh
before 900; Middle English, Old English myrre < Latin myrrha < Greek mýrraAkkadian murru; akin to Hebrew mōr, Arabic murr
Related forms
myrrhed, adjective
myrrhic, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for myrrh
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It is embalmed and kept sweet by the myrrh and cassia of many tears.

    De Profundis Oscar Wilde
  • Your lips have given it their sweetness of honey, their fragrance of myrrh.

    Cleo The Magnificent

    Louis Zangwill
  • Did ever man anoint himself with oil of myrrh to please his fellow?

    The Symposium Xenophon
  • Nicodemus brought a large quantity of myrrh and aloes, about a hundredweight.

    Jesus the Christ James Edward Talmage
  • Gold and sunlight, myrrh and incense, the tinkling of anklets.

    Gigolo Edna Ferber
  • During a quarter of an hour he lavished on him his myrrh and honey.

    Samuel Brohl & Company Victor Cherbuliez
  • myrrh and steel, with fixed alkaly, were then ordered, but to no purpose.

  • The air was cloudy with the breath of frankincense and myrrh.

    Fairy Book Sophie May
British Dictionary definitions for myrrh


any of several burseraceous trees and shrubs of the African and S Asian genus Commiphora, esp C. myrrha, that exude an aromatic resin Compare balm of Gilead (sense 1)
the resin obtained from such a plant, used in perfume, incense, and medicine
another name for sweet cicely (sense 1)
Word Origin
Old English myrre, via Latin from Greek murrha, ultimately from Akkadian murrū; compare Hebrew mōr, Arabic murr
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 myrrh

Old English myrre, from Latin myrrha (also source of Dutch mirre, German Myrrhe, French myrrhe, Italian, Spanish mirra), from Greek myrrha, from a Semitic source (cf. Akkadian murru, Hebrew mor, Arabic murr "myrrh"), from a root meaning "was bitter."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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