[byoo-glos, -glaws]


any of various Old World, boraginaceous herbs, as Anchusa officinalis, having rough leaves, used in medicine, and Lycopsis arvensis, a bristly, blue-flowered herb.

Origin of bugloss

1350–1400; Middle English buglossa < Medieval Latin, for Latin būglōssos < Greek, equivalent to bou-, stem of boûs ox + -glōssos -tongued, adj. derivative of glôssa tongue
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for bugloss

Historical Examples of bugloss

  • The leaves of the Viper's Bugloss are rough and hairy, with smooth edges.

  • The bugloss belongs to what may be called beautiful weeds, despite its rough and bristly stalk.

    A Year in the Fields

    John Burroughs

  • I have seen the Viper's Bugloss often since that day on the railroad train, now that I know it, and think of it.

    Old-Time Gardens

    Alice Morse Earle

  • The Viper's Bugloss is a stout, upright plant, with a curious pale green hairy stem, which is dotted all over with red spots.

  • The first thing you will notice about the Viper's Bugloss is the way the rows of flower-buds curl like a scorpion.

British Dictionary definitions for bugloss



any of various hairy Eurasian boraginaceous plants of the genera Anchusa, Lycopsis, and Echium, esp L. arvensis, having clusters of blue flowersSee also viper's bugloss

Word Origin for bugloss

C15: from Latin būglōssa, from Greek bouglōssos ox-tongued, from bōs ox + glōssa tongue
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 bugloss

1530s, from French buglosse, from Latin buglossa, from Greek bouglossos, literally "ox-tongued," from bous "ox" (see cow (n.)) + glossa "tongue" (see gloss (n.2)) . So called from the shape of its leaves.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper