from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A preparation made from the dried leaves and bark of various plants, often including bearberry and sometimes mixed with tobacco, smoked especially by certain Native American peoples.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A mixture of bark, dried leaves, and often berries and/or tobacco, which is smoked.
  • noun Any of the plants whose berries, leaves or bark used in this mixture.


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

[Unami kələkkəníikkan, item for mixing in, kinnikinnick.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Originally spelled with an "l" in the first part (i.e. killikinick). From an Unami word meaning "mixture, admixture", cognate to Lenape këlëkënikàn ("smoking mixture, killikinick").



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  • A mixture of bark, dried leaves, and sometimes tobacco, formerly smoked by the Native Americans and pioneers in the Ohio valley; or the plants used in this mixture, especially bearberry.

    Gotta love this word. :-)

    February 28, 2007

  • Oh my goodness, yes! Now I only have to find a way to drop it into conversations...

    February 28, 2007

  • Well, you could plant some bearberry and then, while leading a late summer afternoon tour of your garden, announce that you have here a beautiful kinnikkinnick hedge....

    February 28, 2007

  • I've tried it once, made my heart race.

    March 6, 2007

  • Not surprising, tendrel! But I'll bet it was an interesting experience....

    March 6, 2007

  • This plant is particularly valued for use in treating urinary tract inflammation.

    I went looking for etymology and found this:

    kiku. Tobacco. Compare kinnickkinnick (Ojibwe).

    kinnikkinnik. Smoking mixture (from Algonquian language).

    - Source (MS-WORD .doc)

    April 8, 2007

  • "There is already a distinct chill in the air though it is only late July. Last night the temperature dropped below freezing, and this morning we woke to discover an inch of snow on the ground, clinging to the fireweed and the kinnikinnick."

    —James Campbell, The Final Frontiersman (New York and London: Atria Books, 2004), 193

    September 17, 2008

  • Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

    June 17, 2015

  • Just checking to see if mollusque added this word to his Monovocalics list.

    July 21, 2015