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[ahy-leks] /ˈaɪ lɛks/
Origin of ilex1
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin


[ahy-leks] /ˈaɪ lɛks/
any tree or shrub of the genus Ilex.
a holly.
1555-65; < New Latin, Latin īlex ilex1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for ilex
Historical Examples
  • Normally the eggs of the spring butterflies are laid on the under side of the calyces of flower-buds of holly (ilex).

  • The holm oak, ilex, is so called from its holly-like leaves.

    The Romance of Names Ernest Weekley
  • This is usually the case with ilex, Escallonia, and Cydonia.

    Wood and Garden Gertrude Jekyll
  • But it was as if he had made the attempt upon the trunk of the ilex itself.

  • ilex and cedar stood, sombre giants, in a golden, shimmering sea.

    The Hill of Venus Nathan Gallizier
  • The grove of ilex trees is termed the Sacred Grove of Bacchus.

    Rambles in Rome S. Russell Forbes
  • The ilex I know, and there is no more beautiful tree than the ilex.

  • We tied our pony to an ilex and went to explore the Hermitage.

  • They had come out from the Pincian now, stopped and were looking at each other, under the ilex trees.

    Rough-Hewn Dorothy Canfield
  • At the tower in the ilex grove I shall leave you, and I shall return.

    Romance Island Zona Gale
British Dictionary definitions for ilex


any of various trees or shrubs of the widely distributed genus Ilex, such as the holly and inkberry: family Aquifoliaceae
another name for the holm oak
Word Origin
C16: from Latin
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 ilex

late 14c., from Latin ilex "holm-oak," perhaps from an extinct non-Indo-European language.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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