asafetida

[ as-uh-fet-i-duh ]
/ ˌæs əˈfɛt ɪ də /

noun Chemistry.

a soft, brown, lumpy gum resin having a bitter, acrid taste and an obnoxious odor, obtained from the roots of several Near Eastern plants belonging to the genus Ferula, of the parsley family: formerly used in medicine as a carminative and antispasmodic.

QUIZZES

CAN YOU FEEL THE WEAL WITH THIS WORD OF THE DAY QUIZ?

Did you collect all of last week’s words, but eftsoons forget what they mean? Don’t worry, we’re here to jog your memory. See how many words from the week of May 18 to 24 you can get right!
Question 1 of 7
weal
Also a·sa·foet·i·da, asfetida.
Also called devil's dung, food of the gods.

Origin of asafetida

1350–1400; Middle English < Medieval Latin asafoetida, equivalent to asa (< Persian āzā mastic, gum) + Latin foetida, feminine of foetidus fetid

Words nearby asafetida

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for asafoetida

British Dictionary definitions for asafoetida

asafoetida

asafetida

/ (ˌæsəˈfɛtɪdə) /

noun

a bitter resin with an unpleasant onion-like smell, obtained from the roots of some umbelliferous plants of the genus Ferula: formerly used as a carminative, antispasmodic, and expectorant

Word Origin for asafoetida

C14: from Medieval Latin, from asa gum (compare Persian azā mastic) + Latin foetidus evil-smelling, fetid
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