- a European succulent plant, Crithmum maritimum, of the parsley family, having compound leaves and small, whitish flowers, growing in clefts of rock near the sea.
Origin of samphire
1535–45; earlier sampiere < Middle French (herbe de) Saint Pierre (herb of) Saint Peter
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for samphire
Sea spleenwort and masses of 113 samphire grew on the cliffs to his right.Antony Gray,--Gardener
Mother said he'd take the samphire by boat to Fellness, and I thought perhaps he'd take me too.
They got across the sands with their samphire, just as Coomber and Bob were springing ashore.
There was no tuft of samphire to brush her face as she descended.In the Roar of the Sea
The samphire is there still—the crithmum maritimum, or cranagh.Insula Sanctorum et Doctorum
- Also called: rock samphire an umbelliferous plant, Crithmum maritimum, of Eurasian coasts, having fleshy divided leaves and clusters of small greenish-white flowers
- golden samphire a Eurasian coastal plant, Inula crithmoides, with fleshy leaves and yellow flower heads: family Asteraceae (composites)
- another name for glasswort (def. 1)
- any of several other plants of coastal areas
C16 sampiere, from French herbe de Saint Pierre Saint Peter's herb; perhaps influenced by camphire camphor