American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A poisonous Eurasian perennial herb (Atropa belladonna) having usually solitary, nodding, purplish-brown, bell-shaped flowers and glossy black berries. Also called deadly nightshade.
- n. An alkaloidal extract or tincture derived from this plant and used in medicine.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A plant, Atropa Belladonna, or deadly nightshade, natural order Solanaceæ, a native of central and southern Europe. All parts of the plant are poisonous, and depend for their pharmacodynamic properties on the alkaloid atropin. The plant and its alkaloid are largely used in medicine to relieve pain, to check spasm and excessive perspiration, and especially in surgery to dilate the pupil and paralyze the accommodation of the eye.
- n. a plant, Atropa belladonna, having purple bell-shaped flowers and poisonous black glossy berries; deadly nightshade
- n. an alkaloid extracted from this plant, sometimes used medicinally, containing atropine
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. An herbaceous European plant (Atropa belladonna) with reddish bell-shaped flowers and shining black berries. The whole plant and its fruit are very poisonous, and the root and leaves are used as powerful medicinal agents. Its properties are largely due to the alkaloid atropine which it contains. Called also
- n. A species of Amaryllis (Amaryllis belladonna); the belladonna lily.
- n. an alkaloidal extract or tincture of the poisonous belladonna plant that is used medicinally
- n. perennial Eurasian herb with reddish bell-shaped flowers and shining black berries; extensively grown in United States; roots and leaves yield atropine
- From Italian bella donna, literally 'beautiful lady', altered by folk etymology from Medieval Latin bladona 'nightshade', from Gaulish. The folk etymology was motivated by the cosmetic use of nightshade for dilating the eyes. (Wiktionary)
- Italian : bella, feminine of bello, beautiful (from Latin bellus; see deu-2 in Indo-European roots) + donna, lady; see Donna. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“She had read about some of them in her herbology book: a substance called belladonna, which women applied to their eyes to beautify the pupils and which could lead to blindness, and another one called arsenic, which women swallowed in order to improve their skin and which was fatal in large enough doses.”
“They call the belladonna Aaron's Beard in the country, you know; and it is true that the cattle, simple as they are, are never harmed by it; just because, though it is always in their path, they never stop and taste it.”
“Other presses such as belladonna, for example, can pretty much only be found if you show up at a reading in New York, or you order a book directly from the series organizers.”
“The susbstance used to dilate pupils is a relative of the "belladonna" beautiful lady plant so called because the pupil dilation it causes makes people appear to be more beautiful.”
“Botanists claim to recognize several species of the plant, and also to ally tobacco by a botanical consanguinity with other plants differing totally in appearance, properties and uses; connecting it with some containing powerful narcotic poisonous properties, such as belladonna, stramonium and hyoscyamus, and also with the innocent tomato and potato.”
A Sketch of the Tobacco Interests In North Carolina. Being an Account of the Culture, Handling and Manufacture of the Staple; Together with Some Information Respecting the Principal Farmers, Manufacturing Establishments and Warehouses; with Statistics Exhibiting the Growth of Tobacco in the Western Counties, and Also in the Other Tobacco Producing Regions of the State, as Shown By Comparison of the Crop of 1880 with Those of Preceding Years
“Its family is Solanaceae which has, like the Borgias, many toxic members, such as belladonna and black henbane, more suitable for a witches brew than a chef's.”
“A tincture of belladonna and chloride, thirteen drops in hot water six times a day, was supposed to kill the germ.”
“You've either taken some belladonna or you're in love.”
“I think it could be deadly night shade (or belladonna) which creates vivid hallucinations that are commonly described as very unpleasant and wicked delirium.”
“Liz took the belladonna bundle and blew the smoke all over the body.”
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