pimpernel

[ pim-per-nel, -nl ]
/ ˈpɪm pərˌnɛl, -nl /

noun

a plant belonging to the genus Anagallis, of the primrose family, especially A. arvensis (scarlet pimpernel), having scarlet or white flowers that close at the approach of bad weather.

QUIZZES

CAN YOU ACE THIS QUIZ ABOUT “COMPLIMENT” VS. “COMPLEMENT”?

Take this quiz to see if you really know the difference between “compliment” and “complement"!
Question 1 of 11
“Compliment” and “complement” had a shared meaning a long time ago, but today they are no longer interchangeable.

Origin of pimpernel

1400–50; late Middle English pympernele < Middle French pimprenelle, nasalized variant of Old French piprenelle < Late Latin *piperīnella, equivalent to piper pepper + -īn- -ine1 + -ella diminutive suffix; replacing Old English pipeneale < Late Latin pipīnella, syncopated variant of *piperīnella

Words nearby pimpernel

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for pimpernel

British Dictionary definitions for pimpernel

pimpernel
/ (ˈpɪmpəˌnɛl, -nəl) /

noun

any of several plants of the primulaceous genus Anagallis, such as the scarlet pimpernel, typically having small star-shaped flowers
any of several similar and related plants, such as Lysimachia nemorum (yellow pimpernel)

Word Origin for pimpernel

C15: from Old French pimpernelle, ultimately from Latin piper pepper; compare Old English pipeneale
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