from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. Any of various plants of the genus Helleborus, native to Eurasia, most species of which are poisonous.
- n. Any of various plants of the genus Veratrum, especially V. viride of North America, having large leaves and greenish flowers and yielding a toxic alkaloid used medicinally.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A common garden flowering plant, Ranunculaceae helleborus, having supposed medicinal properties.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A genus of perennial herbs (Helleborus) of the Crowfoot family, mostly having powerfully cathartic and even poisonous qualities. Helleborus niger is the European black hellebore, or Christmas rose, blossoming in winter or earliest spring. Helleborus officinalis was the officinal hellebore of the ancients.
- n. Any plant of several species of the poisonous liliaceous genus Veratrum, especially Veratrum album and Veratrum viride, both called white hellebore.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A plant of the genus Helleborus, of the natural order Ranunculaceæ, particularly H. niger, the black hellebore or Christmas rose, a native of southwestern Europe.
- n. A name of similar plants of other genera.
- n. The powdered root of American hellebore, used to destroy lice and caterpillars.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. perennial herbs of the lily family having thick toxic rhizomes
- n. any plant of the Eurasian genus Helleborus
Middle English ellebre, from Old French, from Latin elleborus, from Greek helleboros : perhaps hellos, fawn + -boros, eaten (from bibrōskein, to eat).(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)