• synonyms


  1. any of various evergreen shrubs belonging to the genus Mahonia, of the barberry family, including the Oregon grape.
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Origin of mahonia

< New Latin (1818), after Bernard McMahon (c1775–1816), U.S. botanist, born in Ireland; see -ia
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for mahonia

Historical Examples

  • The panicles of mahonia bloom were showing their gold color.

    Her Father's Daughter

    Gene Stratton-Porter

  • Numerous other species inhabit Asia and America; those of the section Mahonia have pinnate leaves.

  • Whether the genus Mahonia be a good one or not, the plants composing it are very distinct from the true Berberries.

  • Single specimens of B. Aquifolium, the Mahonia, become very ornamental with age.

British Dictionary definitions for mahonia


  1. any evergreen berberidaceous shrub of the Asian and American genus Mahonia, esp M. aquifolium: cultivated for their ornamental spiny divided leaves and clusters of small yellow flowers
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Word Origin

C19: New Latin, named after Bernard McMahon (died 1816), American 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