valerian

[ vuh-leer-ee-uhn ]
/ vəˈlɪər i ən /

noun

any plant of the genus Valeriana, as the common valerian V. officinalis, having small, fragrant flowers of white, lavender, or pink and a root that is used medicinally.
a drug consisting of or made from the root, formerly used as a nerve sedative and antispasmodic.

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Origin of valerian

1350–1400; Middle English valirian<Medieval Latin valeriāna (herb) of Valeria (old Roman province, where plant is said to have been common); see -an

Definition for valerian (2 of 2)

Valerian
[ vuh-leer-ee-uhn ]
/ vəˈlɪər i ən /

noun

Publius Licinius Valerianus, died a.d. c260, Roman emperor 253–60.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for valerian

British Dictionary definitions for valerian (1 of 2)

valerian
/ (vəˈlɛərɪən) /

noun

Also called: allheal any of various Eurasian valerianaceous plants of the genus Valeriana, esp V. officinalis, having small white or pinkish flowers and a medicinal root
a sedative drug made from the dried roots of V. officinalis

Word Origin for valerian

C14: via Old French from Medieval Latin valeriana (herba) (herb) of Valerius, unexplained Latin personal name

British Dictionary definitions for valerian (2 of 2)

Valerian
/ (vəˈlɛərɪən) /

noun

Latin name Publius Licinius Valerianus. died 260 ad, Roman emperor (253–260): renewed persecution of the Christians; defeated by the Persians
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