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

  • n. Any of various aquatic or wetland herbs of the genus Scirpus, having grasslike leaves and usually clusters of small, often brown spikelets.
  • n. Any of several wetland plants of similar aspect, such as the papyrus and the cattail.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any of several wetland herbs, of the genus Scirpus, having clusters of spikelets.
  • n. Any similar plant, such as papyrus.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A kind of large rush, growing in wet land or in water.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The popular name for large rush-like plants growing in marshes.

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

  • n. tall marsh plant with cylindrical seed heads that explode when mature shedding large quantities of down; its long flat leaves are used for making mats and chair seats; of North America, Europe, Asia and North Africa
  • n. tall rush with soft erect or arching stems found in Eurasia, Australia, New Zealand, and common in North America


Middle English bulrish : perhaps alteration (influenced by bule, bull) of bole, stem; see bole1 + rish, rush; see rush2.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)



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