- any plant, shrub, or tree belonging to the genus Cassia, of the legume family, having pinnate leaves and large clusters of flowers.
- any of various cathartic drugs consisting of the dried leaflets of certain of these plants, as one drug (Alexandrian senna) derived from C. acutifolia, or another (Tinnevelly senna) derived from C. angustifolia.
- wild senna.
Origin of senna
1535–45; < New Latin < Arabic sanā
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for senna
Jacob Bernstein on why the Academy snubbed Bill Cunningham New York, Senna, and other crowd-pleasers.Oscar’s Documentary Myopia: Popular Films Don’t Get Nominated
February 2, 2012
If the senna is distasteful a smaller quantity may be used at first.The Mother and Her Child
William S. Sadler
Calomel three grains every third day, with infusion of senna.Zoonomia, Vol. II
“Off with that old Senna T-pot,” said Burr major scornfully.Burr Junior
G. Manville Fenn
Canoes having been procured, they reached Senna on the 27th.Great African Travellers
When at Senna, in the Makololo country, a woman was seized by a crocodile.Stanley in Africa
James P. Boyd
- any of various tropical plants of the leguminous genus Cassia, esp C. angustifolia (Arabian senna) and C. acutifolia (Alexandrian senna), having typically yellow flowers and long pods
- senna leaf the dried leaflets of any of these plants, used as a cathartic and laxative
- senna pods the dried fruits of any of these plants, used as a cathartic and laxative
See also bladder senna
C16: via New Latin from Arabic sanā
- Ayrton (ˈɛətən). 1960–94, Brazilian racing driver: world champion (1988, 1990, 1991)
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 senna
tropical shrub, 1540s, from Modern Latin senna, from Arabic sana. Earlier was sene (c.1400), from French.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper