Virginia snakeroot


See under snakeroot(def 1).

Origin of Virginia snakeroot

An Americanism dating back to 1685–95

Definition for virginia snakeroot (2 of 2)

[ sneyk-root, -roo t ]
/ ˈsneɪkˌrut, -ˌrʊt /


any of various plants whose roots have been regarded as a remedy for snakebites, as the herb Aristolochia serpentaria (Virginia snakeroot), having a medicinal rhizome and rootlets, and the white-flowered Polygala senega (Seneca snakeroot), having a medicinal root.
the root or rhizome of such a plant.
the North American bugbane.
a white eupatorium, Eupatorium rugosum.
a plant, Rauwolfia serpentina (or Rauvolfia serpentina), whose roots are the source of reserpine and other drugs.

Origin of snakeroot

First recorded in 1625–35; snake + root1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

British Dictionary definitions for virginia snakeroot

/ (ˈsneɪkˌruːt) /


any of various North American plants, such as Aristolochia serpentaria (Virginia snakeroot) and Eupatorium urticaefolium (white snakeroot), the roots or rhizomes of which have been used as a remedy for snakebite
the rhizome or root of any such plant
Also called: snakeweed
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