• synonyms


[kol-chi-kuh m, kol-ki-]
  1. any Old World plant of the genus Colchicum, of the lily family, especially the autumn crocus, C. autumnale.
  2. the dried seeds or corms of this plant.
  3. Pharmacology. a medicine or drug prepared from them, used in medicine chiefly in the treatment of gout.
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Origin of colchicum

1590–1600; < New Latin, Latin < Greek kolchikón meadow saffron, noun use of neuter of Kolchikós of Colchis, apparently by association with Medea, the plant being considered poisonous
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Historical Examples of colchicum

British Dictionary definitions for colchicum


  1. any Eurasian liliaceous plant of the genus Colchicum, such as the autumn crocus
  2. the dried seeds or corms of the autumn crocus: a source of colchicine
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Word Origin for colchicum

C16: from Latin, from Greek kolkhikon, from kolkhikos of Colchis
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