Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Any of various Eurasian tendril-bearing vines of the genus Bryonia, having red or black berries and tuberous roots formerly used as medicine.
  • n. The black bryony.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A perennial herb, of genus Bryonia, especially the common wild species, Bryonia dioica.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The common name of several cucurbitaceous plants of the genus Bryonia. The root of Bryonia alba (rough bryony or white bryony) and of Bryonia dioica is a strong, irritating cathartic.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The common name of species of Bryonia, a cucurbitaceous genus of plants, possessing acrid, emetic, and purgative properties which have given them repute as remedies for many diseases from early times.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a vine of the genus Bryonia having large leaves and small flowers and yielding acrid juice with emetic and purgative properties

Etymologies

Latin bryōnia, from Greek bruōniā, from bruein, to swell, teem.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin bryōnia ("bryony"), from Ancient Greek βρυωνία (bruōnia, "bryony"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • "O'er the muir, amang the heather," Eleanor's walk had gone; and her basket was gay with gorse and broom just opening; but from grassy banks on her way she had brought the bright blue speedwell; and clematis and bryony from the hedges, and from under them wild hyacinth and white campion and crane's-bill and primroses; and a meadow she had passed over gave her one or two pretty kinds of orchis, with daisies and cowslips, and grasses of various kinds.

    The Old Helmet

  • Most of my hedges are jungles of the various trees, draped with blackberry, dog-rose, bryony, honeysuckle and wild hop, all scrambling about the branches.

    Wildwood

  • It must have been a last moonflower vision that showed me jasmine and bryony growing all over the bed, I entwine.

    Wildfire

  • Most of the paintings are about 3¼ by 4 inches in size, captioned by four lines of Latin text with oversize, illuminated capitals and surrounded by wide borders of tiny bryony leaves on coiling vines.

    A Most Illuminating Show of Medieval Manuscript Pages

  • Newmania agree bryony is awful. sam leith though is great. a real libertarian conservative.

    The Telegraph and the Tories

  • The apprentice who had kneaded the bread had not noticed anything unusual either, and since his feet were swathed, the bryony would not have reached his skin to cause a rash.

    Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine

  • In addition, both fresh and dried roots were used in medicine -- in a posset bryony was said to cure shortness of breath.

    Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine

  • She recognized the smell of bryony and did not eat of the gingerbread because of my warning.

    Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine

  • Susanna stopped herself on the verge of telling Dame Agnes that three of those former mistresses were now dead of bryony poisoning.

    Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine

  • Both black and white bryony are rampant twining and climbing plants.

    Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine

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