lousewort

lousewort

[lous-wurt, -wawrt]
noun
any plant belonging to the genus Pedicularis, of the figwort family, as the wood betony, formerly supposed to cause lice in sheep feeding on it: one species, P. furbishiae (Furbish lousewort) of parts of Maine and New Brunswick, Canada, having finely toothed leaves and a cluster of yellow flowers, is endangered and was thought to be extinct until specimens were discovered in 1946 and again in 1976.

Origin:
1570–80; louse + wort2

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World English Dictionary
lousewort (ˈlaʊsˌwɜːt)
 
n
See also betony any of various N temperate scrophulariaceous plants of the genus Pedicularis, having spikes of white, yellow, or mauve flowers

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