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2017 Word of the Year

sweet woodruff

noun
1.
See under woodruff.
Origin of sweet woodruff
1790-1800
First recorded in 1790-1800

woodruff

[woo d-ruh f, -ruhf] /ˈwʊd rəf, -ˌrʌf/
noun
1.
any of several plants belonging to the genus Asperula or Galium, of the madder family, as G. odoratum (sweet woodruff) a fragrant plant with small white flowers.
Origin
before 1000; Middle English woderove, Old English wudurofe, wudurife, equivalent to wudu wood1 + -rofe, -rife, element of uncertain meaning; compare German Rübe carrot
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for sweet woodruff
Historical Examples
  • The rich mould underfoot was thick with sweet woodruff and trailing loosestrife.

British Dictionary definitions for sweet woodruff

sweet woodruff

noun
1.
a Eurasian and North African rubiaceous plant, Galium odoratum (or Asperula odorata), having whorls of leaves and clusters of fragrant white flowers

woodruff

/ˈwʊdrʌf/
noun
1.
any of several rubiaceous plants of the genus Galium, esp G. odoratum (sweet woodruff), of Eurasia, which has small sweet-scented white flowers and whorls of narrow fragrant leaves used to flavour wine and liqueurs and in perfumery
Word Origin
Old English wudurofe, from wood1 + rōfe, related to Old High German ruoba, Middle Low German rōve (beet)root, Latin rēpere to creep
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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8
8
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