American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A widespread weed (Anthemis cotula) having rank-smelling, bipinnately divided leaves and white-rayed flower heads. Also called stinking chamomile.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A composite plant, Anthemis Cotula, a common weed throughout Europe and Asiatic Russia, and, by naturalization, in America. It is a branching annual a foot or two high, the leaves finely divided, and the flower-heads having a yellow disk and white rays. The foliage is pungently ill-scented, and is said to blister the hands. It has been used as an emmenagogue and antispasmodic. Other names are dog's-camomile, dog's-fennel, stinking camomile; also Balder-brae, buphthalmum, dillweed. See particularly Anthemis and Cotula.
- n. A mayflower.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. A composite plant (Anthemis Cotula), having a strong odor; dog's fennel. It is a native of Europe, now common by the roadsides in the United States.
- n. The feverfew.
- n. widespread rank-smelling weed having white-rayed flower heads with yellow discs
- May + weed (Wiktionary)
- Middle English maythe weed, mayyen wed, alteration (influenced by May and maiden) of maithe, from Old English mægtha. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“The cornflower and mayweed on the garland around the mummy were in flower in March and April, which tells us the time of year he was buried," said Nigel Hepper of the Royal Horticultural Society at Kew Gardens.”
“Botanists found it included cornflowers and mayweed that were fresh at the time the decoration was made.”
“It held many memories for Sam -- a gift from Cata, way back when; he'd never used it professionally except once to carry willowbark and mayweed powder in, sovereign against the headaches that plagued him one year during a particularly bad pollen harvest.”
“I have some lovely scarlet pimqernel, corn camomile (you may know that better as mayweed) ... ”
“-- Take a teaspoonful of powdered charcoal in molasses every morning, and wash it down with a little tea, or drink half a glass of raw rum or gin, and drink freely of mayweed tea.”
“Yellows of different complexions were discovered in mayweed, goldenrod and sumac, and the little-girl Faiths and Hopes and Harmonys came in with fingers pink from the handling of pokeberries and purple from blackberry stain, tempting the sight with evanescent dyes which would not keep their color even when stayed with alum and fortified with salt.”
“Some knotty knapweeds stay in out-of-the-way places, where the scythe has not been; some bunches of mayweed, too, are visible in the corners of the stubble.”
“Out from that trench, sometimes stealthily slipping between the flattened fern-stalks, came a weasel, and, running through the plantains and fringe-like mayweed or stray pimpernel which covered the neglected ground, made for the straw-rick.”
“By this time generally the corn is high above the mayweed, but this year the flower is level with its shelter.”
“As tall as the young corn the mayweed fringes the arable fields with its white rays and yellow centre, somewhat as the broad moon-daisies stand in the grass.”
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