sweet bay


noun

an American magnolia, Magnolia virginiana, having large oblong leaves and fragrant, white flowers, common on the Atlantic coast.

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Origin of sweet bay

First recorded in 1710–20
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for sweet bay

  • The wind died away; the odor of cedar and sweet-bay hung heavy in the air.

    In Search of the Unknown|Robert W. Chambers
  • Bay-leaf, the leaf of the sweet-bay or laurel tree (Laurus nobilis).

  • He fidgetted with his sweet-bay twig, considering the aromatic leaves with a troubled and concentrated scowl.

    Quick Action|Robert W. Chambers
  • North and south dunes glimmered; and the hot fragrance of sweet-bay mingled with the mounting savour of the sea.

    The Firing Line|Robert W. Chambers

British Dictionary definitions for sweet bay

sweet bay

noun

a small tree, Magnolia virginiana, of SE North America, having large fragrant white flowers: family Magnoliaceae (magnolias)Sometimes shortened to: bay
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