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also absinth, alcoholic liqueur distilled from wine mixed with wormwood (Artemisia Absinthium), 1842, from French absinthe, "essence of wormwood," from Latin absinthum "wormwood," from Greek apsinthion, perhaps from Persian (cf. Persian aspand, of the same meaning). The plant so called in English from c.1500 (Old English used the word in the Latin form).
flavoured, distilled liquor, yellowish green in colour, turning to cloudy, opalescent white when mixed with water. Highly aromatic, this liqueur is dry and somewhat bitter in taste. Absinthe is made from a spirit high in alcohol, such as brandy, and marketed with alcoholic content of 68 percent by volume. Wormwood (Artemisia absinthium; see ) is the chief flavouring ingredient; other aromatic ingredients include licorice (which usually predominates in the aroma), hyssop, fennel, angelica root, aniseed, and star aniseed. The beverage was first produced commercially in 1797 by Henry-Louis Pernod, who purchased the formula from a French exile living in Switzerland.