/buk"thawrn'/, n.
1. any of several, sometimes thorny trees or shrubs belonging to the genus Rhamnus, esp. R. frangula, the bark of which is used in medicine. Cf. buckthorn family.
2. a tree or shrub belonging to the genus Bumelia, of the sapodilla family, esp. B. lycioides, a thorny tree having elliptic leaves and large clusters of white flowers, common in the southern and part of the central U.S.
[1570-80; BUCK1 + THORN, rendering NL cervi spina]

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▪ plant genus
 any of about 100 species of shrubs or trees belonging to the genus Rhamnus, family Rhamnaceae, native to temperate areas in the Northern Hemisphere. The cascara buckthorn (R. purshiana) is the source of cascara sagrada, a cathartic drug.

      The common, or European, buckthorn (R. cathartica), about 3.5 m (12 feet) high, native to Eurasia, is widely naturalized. It has dark bark, often bears spines, and has dark green, oval leaves. The bark yields a yellow dye, and the small black fruits provide a purgative. The alder (alder buckthorn), or glossy, buckthorn (R. frangula), growing up to 6 m, is used as an ornamental; a variety, the tallhedge buckthorn (R. frangula, variety columnaris), forms a narrow hedge up to 4.5 m high and a little more than 1 m wide.

      Carolina buckthorn (R. caroliniana), also called Indian cherry, forms copses from New York to Florida and Texas. Italian buckthorn (R. alaternus), with several cultivated varieties, is grown as an ornamental in warm areas. The rock buckthorn (R. saxatilis), about 1 m tall, is a low spiny shrub.

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Buckthorn — Buck thorn , n. (Bot.) A genus ({Rhamnus}) of shrubs or trees. The shorter branches of some species terminate in long spines or thorns. See {Rhamnus}. [1913 Webster] {Sea buckthorn}, a plant of the genus {Hippopha[ e]}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • buckthorn — [buk′thôrn΄] n. [ BUCK1 + THORN] 1. any of a genus (Rhamnus) of thorny trees or shrubs of the buckthorn family, bearing small greenish flowers and purple berries 2. any of a genus (Bumelia) of trees of the sapodilla family, native to the S U.S.… …   English World dictionary

  • buckthorn — ► NOUN ▪ a thorny shrub or small tree which bears black berries …   English terms dictionary

  • Buckthorn — Taxobox name = Buckthorn image width = 240px image caption = Alder Buckthorn ( Rhamnus frangula ) regnum = Plantae divisio = Magnoliophyta classis = Magnoliopsida ordo = Rosales familia = Rhamnaceae genus = Rhamnus genus authority = L.… …   Wikipedia

  • buckthorn — dygioji šunobelė statusas T sritis vardynas apibrėžtis Šunobelinių šeimos vaistinis nuodingas (Rhamnus cathartica), paplitęs šiaurės Afrikoje, Europoje ir vakarų Azijoje. atitikmenys: lot. Rhamnus cathartica angl. buckthorn; buckthorn cathartic;… …   Lithuanian dictionary (lietuvių žodynas)

  • buckthorn — noun Any of several, often thorny shrubs or small trees of the genus Rhamnus, especially the common buckthorn or purging buckthorn; Rhamnus cathartica …   Wiktionary

  • buckthorn — šaltekšnis statusas T sritis vardynas apibrėžtis Šunobelinių (Rhamnaceae) šeimos augalų gentis (Frangula). atitikmenys: lot. Frangula angl. alder buckthorn; black alder; buckthorn; dogwood vok. Faulbaum; Pulverholz rus. крушина; крушинник lenk.… …   Dekoratyvinių augalų vardynas

  • buckthorn — noun Date: 1578 1. any of a genus (Rhamnus of the family Rhamnaceae, the buckthorn family) of often thorny trees or shrubs some of which yield purgatives or pigments 2. a shrub or small tree (Bumelia lycioides) of the sapodilla family of the… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • buckthorn — SYN: Rhamnus. * * * buck·thorn bək .thȯ(ə)rn n a shrub or tree of the genus Rhamnus sometimes having thorny branches and often containing purgative principles in bark or sap and producing fruits sometimes used as a source of yellow and green… …   Medical dictionary

  • buckthorn — buck•thorn [[t]ˈbʌkˌθɔrn[/t]] n. 1) pln any of several often thorny trees or shrubs of the genus Rhamnus, of the buckthorn family 2) pln a thorny tree, Bumelia lycioides, of the sapodilla family, common in the southern U.S., having large clusters …   From formal English to slang

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