[ fawr-sith-ee-uh, -sahy-thee-uh, fer- ]
/ fɔrˈsɪθ i ə, -ˈsaɪ θi ə, fər- /


a shrub belonging to the genus Forsythia, of the olive family, native to China and southeastern Europe, species of which are cultivated for their showy yellow flowers, which blossom on the bare branches in early spring.

Nearby words

  1. forsterite,
  2. forstner bit,
  3. forswear,
  4. forsworn,
  5. forsyth,
  6. fort,
  7. fort belvoir,
  8. fort benjamin harrison,
  9. fort benning,
  10. fort bliss

Origin of forsythia

< New Latin, after William Forsyth (1737–1804), English horticulturist; see -ia Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for forsythia

British Dictionary definitions for forsythia


/ (fɔːˈsaɪθɪə) /


any oleaceous shrub of the genus Forsythia, native to China, Japan, and SE Europe but widely cultivated for its showy yellow bell-shaped flowers, which appear in spring before the foliage

Word Origin for forsythia

C19: New Latin, named after William Forsyth (1737–1804), English botanist

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 forsythia



1814, coined 1805 in Modern Latin as a genus name in honor of William Forsyth (1737-1804), Scottish horticulturalist who brought the shrub from China. The family name is from Gaelic Fearsithe "man of peace."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper