Definitions

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

  • n. Any of several North American plants, especially blue cohosh, black cohosh, and baneberry.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A perennial American herb (Caulophyllum thalictroides), whose rough rootstock is used in medicine.
  • n. A smooth herb, Actaea racemosa, marketed for medicinal use.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A perennial American herb (Caulophyllum thalictroides), whose rootstock is used in medicine; -- also called pappoose root. The name is sometimes also given to the Cimicifuga racemosa, and to two species of Actæa, plants of the Crowfoot family.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A name in the United States of several plants which have been used medicinally.

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

  • n. a plant of the genus Actaea having acrid poisonous berries

Etymologies

From Eastern Abenaki kkwagrgrave.gifhas.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From an Algonquian word meaning "rough", probably Eastern Abenaki / Penobscot *kkwὰhas. Compare Massachusett kushki ("(it is) rough"). (Wiktionary)

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