Why was "tantrum" trending last week?


[wohd] /woʊd/
a European plant, Isatis tinctoria, of the mustard family, formerly cultivated for a blue dye extracted from its leaves.
the dye extracted from this plant.
before 1000; Middle English wode, Old English wād (cognate with German Waid); akin to French guède, Medieval Latin waizda < Germanic Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for woad
  • Spring herbicide applications were more effective for dyer's woad control compared to fall applications.
  • If you want to conserve water, be concerned about tamarisk and dyer's woad.
British Dictionary definitions for woad


a European plant, Isatis tinctoria, formerly cultivated for its leaves, which yield a blue dye: family Brassicaceae (crucifers) See also dyer's-weed, dyer's rocket
the dye obtained from this plant, used esp by the ancient Britons, as a body dye
Word Origin
Old English wād; related to Old High German weit; Middle Dutch wēd, Latin vitrum
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for woad

Old English wad, from Proto-Germanic *waido- (cf. Danish vaid, Old Frisian wed, Middle Dutch wede, Dutch wede, Old High German weit, German Waid "woad"), probably cognate with Latin vitrium "glass" (see vitreous). Old type of blue dye processed from plant leaves, since superseded by indigo. French guède, Italian guado are Germanic loan-words.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Article for woad

(Isatis tinctoria), biennial or perennial herb, in a genus of about 80 species in the mustard family (Brassicaceae), formerly grown as a source of the blue dye indigo and now sometimes cultivated for its small, four-petalled yellow flowers. It is a summer-flowering native of Eurasia, now naturalized in southeastern North America. Woad reaches 90 cm (3 feet) and produces clusters of dangling, winged, oval, single-seeded fruits. The hairy stem leaves have arrow-shaped bases; the long basal leaves are downy and lance shaped. The ground and dried leaves, when wetted and fermented, produce indigotin.

Learn more about woad with a free trial on
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for woad

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for woad

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for woad