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wolfsbane

[woo lfs-beyn]
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noun
  1. any of several plants in the aconite genus Aconitum, including A. lycoctonum, bearing stalks of hood-shaped purplish-blue flowers, the monkshood A. napellus, which yields a poisonous alkaloid used medicinally, and numerous garden varieties in various colors.

Origin of wolfsbane

1540–50; wolf + 's1 + bane
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for wolfsbane

Historical Examples

  • There was the awesome efficiency of wolfsbane with its deadly store of aconite.

    The Status Civilization

    Robert Sheckley


British Dictionary definitions for wolfsbane

wolfsbane

wolf's-bane

noun
  1. any of several poisonous N temperate plants of the ranunculaceous genus Aconitum, esp A. lycoctonum, which has yellow hoodlike flowers
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

Word Origin and History for wolfsbane

n.

"aconite" (especially Aconitum lycoctonum), 1540s, from wolf + bane; a translation of Latin lycoctonum, from Greek lykotonon, from lykos "wolf" + base of kteinein "to kill."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper