lemon balm


See under balm(def 5).

Origin of lemon balm

First recorded in 1885–90

Definition for lemon balm (2 of 2)


[ bahm ]
/ bɑm /


any of various oily, fragrant, resinous substances, often of medicinal value, exuding from certain plants, especially tropical trees of the genus Commiphora.
a plant or tree yielding such a substance.
any aromatic or fragrant ointment.
aromatic fragrance; sweet odor: the balm of orange blossoms.
any of various aromatic plants of the mint family, especially those of the genus Melissa, as M. officinalis (lemon balm), having ovate lemon-scented leaves used as a seasoning.
anything that heals, soothes, or mitigates pain: the balm of friendship in troubled times.

Origin of balm

1175–1225; Middle English basme, ba(u)me < Anglo-French basme, bal(s)me, ba(u)me; Old French < Latin balsamum balsam; with orthographic l pedantically restored


Related forms

balm·like, adjective

Can be confused

balm bomb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for lemon balm (1 of 2)

lemon balm


the full name of balm (def. 5)

British Dictionary definitions for lemon balm (2 of 2)


/ (bɑːm) /


any of various oily aromatic resinous substances obtained from certain tropical trees and used for healing and soothingSee also balsam (def. 1)
any plant yielding such a substance, esp the balm of Gilead
something comforting or soothingsoft music is a balm
any aromatic or oily substance used for healing or soothing
Also called: lemon balm an aromatic Eurasian herbaceous plant, Melissa officinalis, having clusters of small fragrant white two-lipped flowers: family Lamiaceae (labiates)
a pleasant odour

Derived Forms

balmlike, adjective

Word Origin for balm

C13: from Old French basme, from Latin balsamum balsam
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

Medicine definitions for lemon balm


[ bäm ]


An aromatic salve or oil.
A soothing, healing, or comforting agent.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.