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hyssop

[his-uh p] /ˈhɪs əp/
noun
1.
any of several aromatic herbs belonging to the genus Hyssopus, of the mint family, especially H. officinalis, native to Europe, having clusters of small blue flowers.
2.
any of several related or similar plants, especially of the genera Agastache or Gratiola.
3.
Bible. a plant, perhaps the origan, whose twigs were used in ceremonial sprinkling.
Origin
900
before 900; Middle English, Old English ysope < Late Latin ysōpus, for Latin hyssōpus < Greek hýssōpos < Semitic (compare Hebrew ēzōbh); conformed to Latin or Gk from mid-16th century
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for hyssop
  • Now it shares the season with basil, tarragon, lavender and even the licorice-scented and biblical-sounding hyssop.
British Dictionary definitions for hyssop

hyssop

/ˈhɪsəp/
noun
1.
a widely cultivated Asian plant, Hyssopus officinalis, with spikes of small blue flowers and aromatic leaves, used as a condiment and in perfumery and folk medicine: family Lamiaceae (labiates)
2.
any of several similar or related plants such as the hedge hyssop
3.
a Biblical plant, used for sprinkling in the ritual practices of the Hebrews
Word Origin
Old English ysope, from Latin hyssōpus, from Greek hussōpos, of Semitic origin; compare Hebrew ēzōv
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for hyssop
n.

Old English ysope, from Irish Latin hysopus, from Greek hyssopos, a plant of Palestine, used in Jewish purification rites, from Hebrew 'ezobh (cf. Syriac zupha, Arabic zufa).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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hyssop in the Bible

(Heb. 'ezob; LXX. hyssopos), first mentioned in Ex. 12:22 in connection with the institution of the Passover. We find it afterwards mentioned in Lev. 14:4, 6, 52; Num. 19:6, 18; Heb. 9:19. It is spoken of as a plant "springing out of the wall" (1 Kings 4:33). Many conjectures have been formed as to what this plant really was. Some contend that it was a species of marjoram (origanum), six species of which are found in Palestine. Others with more probability think that it was the caper plant, the Capparis spinosa of Linnaeus. This plant grew in Egypt, in the desert of Sinai, and in Palestine. It was capable of producing a stem three or four feet in length (Matt. 27:48; Mark 15:36. Comp. John 19:29).

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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14
13
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