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ailanthus

[ey-lan-thuh s] /eɪˈlæn θəs/
noun, plural ailanthuses.
1.
any tree belonging to the genus Ailanthus, of the quassia family, especially A. altissima, widely grown in cities.
Compare tree of heaven.
Origin
Central Moluccan
1788
1788; < Neo-Latin Ailantus, Ailanthus (th by association with Greek ánthos flower) < Central Moluccan ai lanit(o), ai lanit(e), equivalent to ai tree, wood + lanit sky + -o, -e a definite article
Related forms
ailanthic, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for ailanthus
  • From this small beginning, and faster than an ailanthus tree in a vacant lot, a giant scandal grows.
  • Two towering ailanthus trees adopted it and now grow tall and proud.
British Dictionary definitions for ailanthus

ailanthus

/eɪˈlænθəs/
noun (pl) -thuses
1.
an E Asian simaroubaceous deciduous tree, Ailanthus altissima, planted in Europe and North America, having pinnate leaves, small greenish flowers, and winged fruits Also called tree of heaven
Word Origin
C19: New Latin, from native name (in Amboina) ai lanto tree (of) the gods
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
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Word Origin and History for ailanthus
n.

"tree of heaven," 1807, Modern Latin, from Amboyna (Malay) ailanto "tree of the gods;" spelling altered by influence of Greek anthos "flower" (see anther).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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