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witch hazel

[wich hey-zuh l] /ˈwɪtʃ ˌheɪ zəl/
noun
1.
a shrub, Hamamelis virginiana, of eastern North America, having toothed, egg-shaped leaves and small, yellow flowers.
2.
a liquid extraction from the leaves or bark of this plant mixed with water and alcohol, used externally as a liniment for inflammations and bruises and as an astringent.
Origin
1535-1545
1535-45; witch, variant of wych (see wych elm)
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for witch hazel
  • She tried toners, pore cleansers, eye creams and masks of egg yolk and witch hazel.
  • witch hazel is a natural astringent and eases irritation.
  • The branches on the witch hazel are covered with yellow flowers.
  • Hidden behind the red maple trees are branches bursting with floral fireworks: witch hazel in bloom.
British Dictionary definitions for witch hazel

witch hazel

noun
1.
any of several trees and shrubs of the genus Hamamelis, esp H. virginiana, of North America, having ornamental yellow flowers and medicinal properties: family Hamamelidaceae
2.
an astringent medicinal solution containing an extract of the bark and leaves of H. virginiana, applied to treat bruises, inflammation, etc
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 witch hazel
n.

1540s, probably from Old English wice "wych-elm" (from wican "to bend") + hæsel, used for any bush of the pine family. The North American bush, from which a soothing lotion is made, was so called from 1670s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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witch hazel in Medicine

witch hazel n.

  1. Any of several deciduous shrubs or small trees of the genus Hamamelis, especially H. virginiana, of eastern North America, having yellow flowers that bloom in late autumn or winter.

  2. An alcoholic solution containing an extract of the bark and leaves of this plant, applied externally as a mild astringent.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Word Value for witch

13
13
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