[ kost-mair-ee, kawst- ]
/ ˈkɒstˌmɛər i, ˈkɔst- /

noun, plural cost·mar·ies.

a composite plant, Chrysanthemum balsamita, that has silvery, fragrant leaves and is used in salads and as a flavoring.

Origin of costmary

1325–75; Middle English costmarie, equivalent to cost (Old English cost costmary < Latin costum, costus a composite herb, Saussurea lappa < Greek kóstos) + Marie (the Virgin) Mary
Also called mint geranium. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for costmary


/ (ˈkɒstˌmɛərɪ) /

noun plural -maries

a herbaceous plant, Chrysanthemum balsamita, native to Asia. Its fragrant leaves were used as a seasoning and to flavour ale: family Asteraceae (composites)Also called: alecost

Word Origin for costmary

C15 costmarie, from Latin costum aromatic plant + Marie (the Virgin) Mary
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