[pach-oo-lee, puh-choo-lee]
a plant, Pogostemon cablin, of tropical Asia, that yields a fragrant oil (patchouli oil) used in the manufacture of perfumes.
a penetrating perfume made from this oil.
Also, pachouli, patchouly.

1835–45; < Tamil paccuḷi Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
patchouli, pachouli or patchouly (ˈpætʃʊlɪ, pəˈtʃuːlɪ, ˈpætʃʊlɪ, pəˈtʃuːlɪ, ˈpætʃʊlɪ, pəˈtʃuːlɪ)
1.  any of several Asiatic trees of the genus Pogostemon, the leaves of which yield a heavy fragrant oil: family Lamiaceae (labiates)
2.  the perfume made from this oil
[C19: from Tamil paccilai, from paccu green + ilai leaf]
pachouli, pachouli or patchouly
[C19: from Tamil paccilai, from paccu green + ilai leaf]
patchouly, pachouli or patchouly
[C19: from Tamil paccilai, from paccu green + ilai leaf]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

perfume made from an Indian plant of the mint family, 1845, from the native name for the plant in Madras, said to be from Tamil pachchai "green" + ilai "leaf." The form of the word appears Fr., but this has not been explained and the record of it in Eng. predates that in Fr.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Lavender, rosemary and patchouli are perfumes obtained from members of this family.
The book smells a little too much of musk and patchouli.
Patchouli, with its camphoraceous smell, is commonly found in these perfumes.
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