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jimson weed

[jim-suh n]
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noun
  1. a coarse, rank-smelling weed, Datura stramonium, of the nightshade family, having oaklike, poisonous leaves and tubular white or lavender flowers.
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Also jimpson weed [jimp-suh n] /ˈdʒɪmp sən/, Jimson weed.

Origin of jimson weed

1805–15, Americanism; variant of Jamestown weed, after Jamestown, Virginia
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for jimson weed

Historical Examples

  • Part of the initiation of boys consisted of the drinking of jimson-weed.

    The Religion of the Indians of California

    A. L. Kroeber

  • The shamans and others sometimes take the jimson-weed (smal-a-ga-to´-a), pound it up, soak it, and drink the decoction.

  • The jimson-weed, which is a native of Asia, has become quite common in waste places.

  • I never heern tell of nobody carryin' jimson-weed pods in their bosoms.

    The End Of The World

    Edward Eggleston

  • Ironweed and joepye-weed are such lusty, vigorous plants, and burdock and jimson-weed.

    In the Open

    Stanton Davis Kirkham


British Dictionary definitions for jimson weed

jimson weed

noun
  1. US and Canadian a poisonous solanaceous plant, Datura stramonium, of the N hemisphere, having white funnel-shaped flowers and spiny capsule fruitsAlso called (in Britain and certain other countries): thorn apple
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Word Origin

C17: from earlier Jamestown weed, from Jamestown, Virginia
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 jimson weed

n.

also jimsonweed, 1812, American English, shortening of Jamestown-weed (1680s), from Jamestown, Virginia colony, where it was discovered by Europeans (1676), when British soldiers mistook it for an edible plant and subsequently hallucinated for 11 days.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper