• synonyms


[vahy-bur-nuh m]
  1. any of numerous shrubs or trees belonging to the genus Viburnum, of the honeysuckle family, certain species of which, as the cranberry bush, V. opulus, or snowball, are cultivated for ornament.
  2. the dried bark of various species of Viburnum, used in medicine.
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Origin of viburnum

First recorded in 1725–35, viburnum is from the Latin word vīburnum wayfaring tree
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for viburnum

Historical Examples of viburnum

  • We also stewed our tree-cranberries (Viburnum opulus), sweetening them with sugar.

    The Maine Woods

    Henry David Thoreau

  • Viburnum has been called a uterine sedative, whatever that may be.

  • Viburnum plicatum, Japan Snowball, one of the finest shrubs.

    A Woman's Hardy Garden

    Helena Rutherfurd Ely

  • When neither of these can be had the inner bark of the arrow wood (Viburnum) or mansa-hi is substituted for them.

  • The Water-elder (Viburnum opulus) now makes a brave show in the edge of the copse.

    Wood and Garden

    Gertrude Jekyll

British Dictionary definitions for viburnum


  1. any of various temperate and subtropical caprifoliaceous shrubs or trees of the genus Viburnum, such as the wayfaring tree, having small white flowers and berry-like red or black fruits
  2. the dried bark of several species of this tree, sometimes used in medicine
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Word Origin for viburnum

C18: from Latin: wayfaring tree
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 viburnum


genus of shrubs, the arrowwood, 1731, from Latin viburnum, which is said to be probably an Etruscan loan-word.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper