[ ey-lan-thuh s ]
/ eɪˈlæn θəs /

noun, plural ai·lan·thus·es.

any tree belonging to the genus Ailanthus, of the quassia family, especially A. altissima, widely grown in cities.

Nearby words

  1. aiken,
  2. aiken, conrad,
  3. aikido,
  4. aikona,
  5. ail,
  6. ailanthus silkworm,
  7. aileen,
  8. aileron,
  9. aileron roll,
  10. ailette

Origin of ailanthus

1788; < New Latin Ailantus, Ailanthus (th by association with Greek ánthos flower) < Central Moluccan ai lanit(o), ai lanit(e), equivalent to ai tree, wood + lanit sky + -o, -e a definite article

Related formsai·lan·thic, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for ailanthus

British Dictionary definitions for ailanthus


/ (eɪˈlænθəs) /

noun plural -thuses

an E Asian simaroubaceous deciduous tree, Ailanthus altissima, planted in Europe and North America, having pinnate leaves, small greenish flowers, and winged fruitsAlso called: tree of heaven

Word Origin for ailanthus

C19: New Latin, from native name (in Amboina) ai lanto tree (of) the gods

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 ailanthus



"tree of heaven," 1807, Modern Latin, from Amboyna (Malay) ailanto "tree of the gods;" spelling altered by influence of Greek anthos "flower" (see anther).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper