calamus

[kal-uh-muhs]
noun, plural calami [kal-uh-mahy] .
1.
the sweet flag, Acorus calamus.
2.
its aromatic root.
3.
any of various tropical Asian palms of the genus Calamus, some of which are a source of rattan.
4.
the hollow base of a feather; a quill.

Origin:
1350–1400; Middle English < Latin < Greek kálamos reed, stalk

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Collins
World English Dictionary
calamus (ˈkæləməs)
 
n , pl -mi
1.  any tropical Asian palm of the genus Calamus, some species of which are a source of rattan and canes
2.  another name for sweet flag
3.  the aromatic root of the sweet flag
4.  ornithol the basal hollow shaft of a feather; quill
 
[C14: from Latin, from Greek kalamos reed, cane, stem]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Easton
Bible Dictionary

Calamus definition


the Latin for cane, Hebrew _Kaneh_, mentioned (Ex. 30:23) as one of the ingredients in the holy anointing oil, one of the sweet scents (Cant. 4:14), and among the articles sold in the markets of Tyre (Ezek. 27:19). The word designates an Oriental plant called the "sweet flag," the Acorus calamus of Linnaeus. It is elsewhere called "sweet cane" (Isa. 43:24; Jer. 6:20). It has an aromatic smell, and when its knotted stalk is cut and dried and reduced to powder, it forms an ingredient in the most precious perfumes. It was not a native of Palestine, but was imported from Arabia Felix or from India. It was probably that which is now known in India by the name of "lemon grass" or "ginger grass," the Andropogon schoenanthus. (See CANE.)

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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Example sentences
Calamus: the hollow inner portion of the feather shaft that lacks barbs and attaches to the skin.
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