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vervain

[vur-veyn] /ˈvɜr veɪn/
noun
1.
any plant belonging to the genus Verbena, of the verbena family, having elongated or flattened spikes of stalkless flowers.
Origin of vervain
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English vervaine < Anglo-French, Middle French verveine < Latin verbēna leafy twig, holy bough carried by priests
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for vervain
Historical Examples
  • With a movement almost unconscious he held the silken fabric close to his face and inhaled … vervain!

    The Grey Cloak Harold MacGrath
  • It was very good of you not to mention him before, Mrs. vervain.

    A Foregone Conclusion William Dean Howells
  • As he hung over her he drank in the faint perfume of vervain that arose from her dressing-gown.

    A Love Episode Emile Zola
  • He smiled patiently, and confessed that Mrs. vervain had all the reasons on her side.

    A Foregone Conclusion William Dean Howells
  • Upon the warm wind a fragrance was borne, cedar and vervain, and the scent of a hundred flowers.

    Japanese Fairy Tales Grace James
  • "Oh yes, there is," pleaded Mrs. vervain, laying her hand on his arm.

    A Foregone Conclusion William Dean Howells
  • "You see it's an American breakfast," said Mrs. vervain with a critical glance at the table before she sat down.

    A Foregone Conclusion William Dean Howells
  • He unfolded to him, as fully as he understood it, Mrs. vervain's scheme.

    A Foregone Conclusion William Dean Howells
  • Their look was sure death, but they could be poisoned by a draught compounded of agrimony, dill and vervain.

  • "I'm always getting it on askew," Mrs. vervain said for greeting to Ferris.

    A Foregone Conclusion William Dean Howells
British Dictionary definitions for vervain

vervain

/ˈvɜːveɪn/
noun
1.
any of several verbenaceous plants of the genus Verbena, having square stems and long slender spikes of purple, blue, or white flowers
Word Origin
C14: from Old French verveine, from Latin verbēna sacred bough; see verbena
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 vervain
n.

herbaceous plant, much valued medicinally in Middle Ages, late 14c., from Old French verveine (13c.), from Latin verbena (see verbena).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Word Value for vervain

13
16
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