Definitions

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

  • n. A poisonous Eurasian ornamental shrub (Daphne mezereum) having fragrant lilac-purple flowers and small scarlet fruit.
  • n. The dried bark of this plant, formerly used externally as a vesicant and internally for arthritis.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An ornamental shrub, Daphne mezereum, having purple flowers and bright red fruit.
  • n. The dried bark of this plant, once used as a vesicant.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A small European shrub (Daphne Mezereum), whose acrid bark is used in medicine.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. An Old World shrub, Daphne Mezereum. See cut under Daphne.

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

  • n. small European deciduous shrub with fragrant lilac-colored flowers followed by red berries on highly toxic twigs

Etymologies

Middle English mizerion, from Medieval Latin mezereon, from Arabic māzaryūn, of Persian origin.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Arabic مازريون (māzaryūn). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • There followeth, for the latter part of January and February, the mezereon – tree, which then blossoms; crocus vernus, both the yellow and the grey; primroses; anemones; the early tulippa; hyacinthus orientalis; chamairis; fritellaria.

    The Essays

  • So that when in February there came a blue, bright morning, the morning that suggests yellow crocuses and the smell of a mezereon tree and the smell of damp, warm earth, Daphne hastily got a taxi and drove out to the hospital.

    The Ladybird

  • It is still very cold, but the days are longer, and there is the yellow crocus coming up, and the mezereon tree is in blossom, and there are some white snow-drops peeping up their little heads.

    Harry's Ladder to Learning

  • There followeth, for the latter part of January and February, the mezereon-tree, which then blossoms; crocus vernus, 3 both the yellow and the grey; primroses; anemones; the early tulippa; hyacinthus orientalis; chamairis; fritellaria.

    XLVI. Of Gardens

  • The little gardens were bright with daffodils, mezereon, and flowering currant.

    A Popular Schoolgirl

  • But when I looked lower down, there was a sweeter message still, for the mezereon was awake, with its tiny porcelain crimson flowers and its minute leaves of bright green, budding as I think Aaron's rod must have budded, the very crust of the sprig bursting into little flames of green and red.

    Escape, and Other Essays

  • The singular situation of this romantic spot invited me to remain in it till the sun was about to sink on the horizon: during which time I visited every little cave delved in the ridges of rock, and gathered large sprigs of the mezereon and rhododendron in full bloom, which, with a surprising variety of other plants, carpeted this lovely glen.

    Dreams Waking Thoughts and Incidents

  • Columbine, which is a wild plant with blue or white flowers, as well as a domesticated one, has a toxic principle like that of the monkshood, more especially in the seeds; and the pretty red berries of the mezereon are responsible for the deaths or illness of children nearly every autumn.

    The Naturalist on the Thames

  • Among other plants which may cause serious mischief, but are seldom suspected, are such harmless-looking flowers as the meadowsweet, herb-paris, the common fool's-parsley, found growing in quantities in the gardens of unlet houses and neglected ground which has been in cultivation, mezereon, columbine, and laburnum.

    The Naturalist on the Thames

  • When applied to the skin, it blisters like mezereon.

    Resources of the Southern Fields and Forests, Medical, Economical, and Agricultural. Being also a Medical Botany of the Confederate States; with Practical Information on the Useful Properties of the Trees, Plants, and Shrubs

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  • (formerly also Dutch mezereon)

    August 6, 2008