amaranth

[am-uh-ranth]
noun
1.
an imaginary, undying flower.
2.
any plant of the genus Amaranthus, some species of which are cultivated as food and some for their showy flower clusters or foliage. Compare amaranth family.
3.
Chemistry. a purplish-red, water-soluble powder, C 20 H 11 N 2 O 10 Na 3 , an azo dye used chiefly to color pharmaceuticals, food, and garments.

Origin:
1545–55; < Latin amarantus, alteration of Greek amáranton unfading flower, noun use of neuter singular of amárantos, equivalent to a- a-6 + maran- (stem of maraínein to fade) + -tos verbal adjective suffix; -th- < Greek ánthos flower

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World English Dictionary
amaranth (ˈæməˌrænθ)
 
n
1.  poetic an imaginary flower that never fades
2.  love-lies-bleeding tumbleweed See also pigweed any of numerous tropical and temperate plants of the genus Amaranthus, having tassel-like heads of small green, red, or purple flowers: family Amaranthaceae
3.  a synthetic red food colouring (E123), used in packet soups, cake mixes, etc
 
[C17: from Latin amarantus, from Greek amarantos unfading, from a-1 + marainein to fade]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

amaranth
1610s, from Fr. amarante, from L. amarantus, from Gk. amarantos, lit. "everlasting," from a- "not" + stem of marainein "die away, quench, extinguish." In classical use, a poet's word for an imaginary flower that never fades. It was applied to a genus of ornamental plants 1550s. Ending influenced by plant
names with Greek -anthos "flower."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
The latest hedge-fund crisis-Amaranth's demise after making disastrous bets on natural gas-barely troubled the markets.
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