- the hard, light-colored, closegrained, sweet-smelling heartwood of any of several allied trees of Asia, used for carving and cabinetmaking or burned as incense; esp., the wood of a S Asian evergreen tree (Santalum album) of the sandalwood family
- any tree yielding such wood
- any of a number of similar or related trees
- the wood of any of these
Origin of sandalwoodsandal, sandalwood ; from Middle English sandell ; from Middle French sandal ; from Medieval Latin sandalum ; from Late Greek santalon ; from Arabic ṣandal, ultimately ; from Sanskrit candana ; from Indo-European base an unverified form kand-, to gleam, bright from source Classical Latin candere, to shine
- a. Any of several tropical Asian semiparasitic trees of the genus Santalum, especially S. album, having aromatic yellowish heartwood used in cabinetmaking and wood carving and yielding an oil used in perfumery.b. Any of several other tropical Asian trees, especially those of the genera Adenanthera and Pterocarpus that yield a hard wood and a red dye.c. The wood of any of these trees.
- A light to moderate or grayish brown.
- Any of various tropical trees of the genus Santalum, native or long naturalized in India, Australia, Hawaii, and many south Pacific islands.
- The aromatic heartwood of these trees used in ornamental carving, in the construction of insect-repellent boxes and chests, and as a source of certain perfumes.
Middle English sandell, saundres, from Old French sandale, from Medieval Latin sandalum, from Ancient Greek σαγάλινος (santalinos, “of sandalwood”), from σάνδανον (sandanon), from Sanskrit चन्दन (candana)