from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • proper n. A taxonomic genus within the family Papaveraceae — the poppies.


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Named by botanist Carl von Linnaeus (1707-1778) after Latin pappa ("milk"), because it has latex which resembles milk.



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  • Also, see papaver.

    July 1, 2015

  • The etymology given above from Wiktionary contains a misunderstanding. Linnaeus didn't name it after anything; he just used the ordinary Latin word papaver "poppy". It is debatable what this papaver came from. The Wiktionary etymology is apparently imagining a connexion (deep in time) with "pap".

    July 1, 2015

  • Papaver is a genus of 70–100 species of frost-tolerant annuals, biennials, and perennials native to temperate and cold regions of Eurasia, Africa and North America. Heroin, morphine and opium are inspissate juices and narcotic poisons derived from this genus.

    Papaver somniferum, the opium poppy, is the species of plant from which opium and poppy seeds are derived. Opium is the source of many drugs, including morphine (and its derivative heroin), thebaine, codeine, papaverine, and noscapine.

    June 29, 2015