Webster's New World College Dictionary Copyright © 2010 by Wiley Publishing, Inc., Cleveland, Ohio.
- any of a genus (Asphodeline) of plants of the lily family, having fleshy roots, narrow leaves, and white or yellow, lilylike flowers; esp. the classic flower of death (A. lutea)
- any of a similar genus (Asphodelus) of plants of the lily family, having leafless flower stems
Origin: < ModL < L asphodelus < Gr asphodelos
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th edition Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
- a. Any of several chiefly Mediterranean plants of the genera Asphodeline and Asphodelus in the lily family, having linear leaves and elongate clusters of white, pink, or yellow flowers.b. Any of several other plants, such as the bog asphodel.
- In Greek poetry and mythology, the flowers of Hades and the dead, sacred to Persephone.
- In early English and French poetry, the daffodil.
Origin: Latin asphodelus, from Greek asphodelos.