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pollen

[pol-uh n]
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noun
  1. the fertilizing element of flowering plants, consisting of fine, powdery, yellowish grains or spores, sometimes in masses.
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verb (used with object)
  1. to pollinate.
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Origin of pollen

1515–25; < New Latin, special use of Latin: fine flour, mill dust
Related formspol·len·less, adjectivepol·len·like, adjectivepol·lin·ic [puh-lin-ik] /pəˈlɪn ɪk/, pol·lin·i·cal, adjectiveun·pol·lened, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for pollen

dander, irritant, pollen, antigen, ragweed

Examples from the Web for pollen

Historical Examples of pollen

  • These, as they devour nectar, dust themselves with the pollen near by.

    Little Masterpieces of Science:

    Various

  • The stigma, if pollen suffice, should be covered with pollen.

  • But the Editor does not say that this substance "contained" pollen.

  • Polliniferous: formed for collecting pollen: pollen bearing.

  • The flowers give honey for the bees; the bees carry the pollen for the flowers.

    Valley of Dreams

    Stanley Grauman Weinbaum


British Dictionary definitions for pollen

pollen

noun
  1. a fine powdery substance produced by the anthers of seed-bearing plants, consisting of numerous fine grains containing the male gametes
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Derived Formspollinic (pəˈlɪnɪk), adjective

Word Origin for pollen

C16: from Latin: powder; compare Greek palē pollen

Pollen

noun
  1. Daniel. 1813–96, New Zealand statesman, born in Ireland: prime minister of New Zealand (1876)
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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 pollen

n.

1760 as a botanical term for the fertilizing element of flowers (from Linnæus, 1751), earlier "fine flour" (1520s), from Latin pollen "mill dust; fine flour," related to polenta "peeled barley," and pulvis (genitive pulveris) "dust," from PIE root *pel- (1) "dust; flour" (cf. Greek poltos "pap, porridge," Sanskrit pálalam "ground seeds," Lithuanian pelenai, Old Church Slavonic popelu, Russian pépelŭ "ashes").

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

pollen in Medicine

pollen

(pŏlən)
n.
  1. Microspores of seed plants carried by wind or insects prior to fertilization.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

pollen in Science

pollen

[pŏlən]
  1. Powdery grains that contain the male reproductive cells of most plants. In gymnosperms, pollen is produced by male cones or conelike structures. In angiosperms, pollen is produced by the anthers at the end of stamens in flowers. Each pollen grain contains a generative cell, which divides into two nuclei (one of which fertilizes the egg), and a tube cell, which grows into a pollen tube to conduct the generative cell or the nuclei into the ovule. The pollen grain is the male gametophyte generation of seed-bearing plants. In gymnosperms, each pollen grain also contains two sterile cells (called prothallial cells), thought to be remnants of the vegetative tissue of the male gametophyte.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

pollen in Culture

pollen

The male sex cells in plants. In flowering plants, pollen is produced in thin filaments in the flower called stamens. (See fertilization and pollination.)

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Note

When pollen is carried into the air by the wind, it frequently causes allergic reactions (see allergy) in humans.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.