any of several plants of the genus Acanthus, of the Mediterranean region, having spiny or toothed leaves and showy, white or purplish flowers.: Compare acanthus family.
an architectural ornament, as in the Corinthian capital, resembling the leaves of this plant.
- a·can·thine [uh-kan-thin, -thahyn], /əˈkæn θɪn, -θaɪn/, adjective
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How to use acanthus in a sentence
This basket happened to be placed just above the root of an acanthus.Ten Books on Architecture | Vitruvius
The legs are boldly carved with the acanthus leaf, and everything about the piano is as elegant as possible.The Old Furniture Book | N. Hudson Moore
It has a greater resemblance to the acanthus plant than it has to any solar disk imaginable.The Swastika | Thomas Wilson
The tamarisk appears afterwards to have given the idea of a subdivision of leaf more pure and quaint than that of the acanthus.The Stones of Venice, Volume I (of 3) | John Ruskin
The capitals are formed by the semi-Gothic classical acanthus leaves of the period.Cathedral Cities of Italy | William Wiehe Collins
British Dictionary definitions for acanthus
any shrub or herbaceous plant of the genus Acanthus, native to the Mediterranean region but widely cultivated as ornamental plants, having large spiny leaves and spikes of white or purplish flowers: family Acanthaceae: See also bear's-breech
a carved ornament based on the leaves of the acanthus plant, esp as used on the capital of a Corinthian column
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