Definitions

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

  • n. Any of a group of hybrid garden primroses having clusters of variously colored flowers.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The oxlip, Primula elatior, so called because the peduncle bears a many-flowered umbel.
  • n. A bulbous flowering plant of the genus Narcissus.

Etymologies

New Latin, from Greek poluanthos, having many flowers : polu-, poly- + anthos, flower.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

  • It was driven by his gardener, and filled to overflowing with azaleas and polyanthus, and great bunches of irises and tulips and freesias.

    Politics 101

  • I think I now have _two_ wicked hummingbirds; certainly, there was a hummer every time I turned round, it seemed, even on my deck checking out the polyanthus.

    Happy Easter.

  • She became conscious that the long grass was drenched and her shoes and stockings wet through; there was light enough to see in that grass the stars of jonquil, grape hyacinth and the pale cast-out tulips; there would be polyanthus, too, bluebells and cowslips — a few.

    Flowering Wilderness

  • English spring, when celandines open their yellow under the hedges, and violets are in the secret, and by the broad paths of the garden polyanthus and crocuses vary the velvet and flame, and bits of yellow wallflower shake raggedly, with a wonderful triumphance, out of the cracks of the wall.

    The Ladybird

  • After I had observed every flower, and listened to a disquisition on every plant, I was permitted to depart; but first, with great pomp, he plucked a polyanthus and presented it to me, as one conferring a prodigious favour.

    Agnes Grey

  • There were pale yellow polyanthus, and blue forget-me-nots coming into flower round the edge: and all the centre was filled with pansies.

    Bonecrack

  • She took a big patch and sowed many packets of seeds there She bought little plants too, gay double daisies, velvet pansies and pretty polyanthus to make the borders of her patch gay.

    Summer Term At St Clare's

  • Then I count three, and if any of you can guess the word during that time we shall all start together for the nearest polyanthus, and when we reach it call 'polyanthus.'

    Little Folks (July 1884) A Magazine for the Young

  • And there have been more black beetles in Vendale since than ever were known before; all, of course, owing to Tom's having blacked the original papa of them all, just as he was setting off to be married, with a sky-blue coat and scarlet leggings, as smart as a gardener's dog with a polyanthus in his mouth.

    Journeys Through Bookland, Vol. 2

  • They are, however, very distinct on the one hand from the primrose (_Primula vulgaris_ or _acaulis_) and polyanthus

    Hardy Perennials and Old Fashioned Flowers Describing the Most Desirable Plants, for Borders, Rockeries, and Shrubberies.

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