- any of a genus (Aconitum) of poisonous plants of the buttercup family, with blue, purple, or yellow hoodlike flowers; monkshood; wolfsbane
- a rapidly acting poisonous drug usually made from the dried roots of a European monkshood (Aconitum napellus) and formerly used as a cardiac and respiratory sedativealso ac·o·ni′tum
Origin of aconiteModern Latin aconitum from Classical Latin from Classical Greek akoniton
- Any of various usually poisonous perennial herbs of the genus Aconitum in the buttercup family, having tuberous roots, palmately lobed leaves, and blue, purple, or white flowers with a large hoodlike upper sepal.
- The dried leaves and roots of some of these plants, which yield a poisonous alkaloid that was formerly used medicinally. Also called In both senses also called monkshood . Also called wolfsbane .
Origin of aconiteFrench aconit from Latin aconītum from Greek akonīton perhaps from neuter sing. of akonītos without dust or struggle a- without ; see a- 1. konis dust