citronella

[si-truh-nel-uh]

Origin of citronella

1855–60; < New Latin < French citronelle, equivalent to citron citron + -elle diminutive suffix
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for citronella

Historical Examples of citronella


British Dictionary definitions for citronella

citronella

noun
  1. Also called: citronella grass a tropical Asian grass, Cymbopogon (or Andropogon) nardus, with bluish-green lemon-scented leaves
  2. Also called: citronella oil the yellow aromatic oil obtained from this grass, used in insect repellents, soaps, perfumes, etc

Word Origin for citronella

C19: New Latin, from French citronnelle lemon balm, from citron lemon
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 citronella
n.

1858 in reference to a type of fragrant grass, and especially to the oil it yields, from French citronelle "lemon liquor," from citron (see citrus). Originally an Asiatic grass used in perfumes, later applied to a substance found in lemon oil, etc.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

citronella in Science

citronella

[sĭt′rə-nĕlə]
  1. The pale-yellow, lemon-scented oil obtained from the leaves of a tropical Asian grass (Cymbopogon nardus), used in insect repellents and perfumes. Citronella consists primarily of an aldehyde of octane.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.