from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The Bombax Malabaricum, native in India. The silky hairs surrounding the seeds are used for stuffing cushions, etc.
  • noun The cottonwood of America.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • There it lay, streaked with long shadows from the setting sun, while a cool southern air rustled in the cotton-tree, and flapped to and fro the great banana-leaves; a tiny paradise of art and care.

    Westward Ho!

  • Four brass swivels, which they had brought up, were mounted, fixed in logs, so as to command the path; the musketeers and archers clustered round them with their tackle ready, and half-a-dozen good marksmen volunteered into the cotton-tree with their arquebuses, as a post whence “a man might have very pretty shooting.”

    Westward Ho!

  • Beneath a honeycombed cliff, which supported one enormous cotton-tree, was a spot of some thirty yards square sloping down to the stream, planted in rows with magnificent banana-plants, full twelve feet high, and bearing among their huge waxy leaves clusters of ripening fruit; while, under their mellow shade, yams and cassava plants were flourishing luxuriantly, the whole being surrounded by a hedge of orange and scarlet flowers.

    Westward Ho!

  • On the platform, is placed the bedding belonging to the deceased, the undercloth, counterpane, etc., and at the head are laid the pillows, bolster-shaped and stuffed with cotton-tree fluff, or shredded palm-leaves, and covered with some gaily-coloured cotton cloth.

    Travels in West Africa

  • The other trees are the mfuma, cotton-tree or bombax (Pentandria truncospinoso, Smith), much valued as a canoe: Merolla uses Mafuma, a plural form, and speaks of its “wonderful fine wool.”

    Two Trips to Gorilla Land and the Cataracts of the Congo

  • Here and there are clumps of tall cocoas, a capot, pullom or wild cotton-tree, and a neat village upon prairie land, where stone is rare as on the Pampas.

    Two Trips to Gorilla Land and the Cataracts of the Congo

  • The hat-palm, a brab or wild date, the spine-palm (Phœnix spinosa), and the Okumeh or cotton-tree disputed the ground with the foul Rhizophora.

    Two Trips to Gorilla Land and the Cataracts of the Congo

  • And, last of all, the cotton-tree gave her one of its branches, which would give her, if she shook it, every kind of beautiful garment.

    Filipino Popular Tales

  • Passing by a cotton-tree, she saw that the ground round about the tree needed sweeping, and she swept it.

    Filipino Popular Tales

  • On the arid and burning shores of the ocean, flourish, in addition to these, the cotton-tree, the magnolias, the cactus, the sugar-cane, and all the luscious fruits which ripen under the genial sun, and amidst the balmy breezes of the

    Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 62, Number 361, November, 1845.


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