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Any of various parasitic plants of the genus Rafflesia of Southeast Asia, having no leaves and a solitary fleshy flower with the odor of carrion. The species R. arnoldii has the largest flowers among all flowering plants, measuring up to 1 meter (3 feet) in diameter.

[New Latin, genus name, after Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles (1781-1826), British colonial administrator who acquired Singapore for the East India Company in 1819 and founded a settlement there.]


(Plants) any of various tropical Asian parasitic leafless plants constituting the genus Rafflesia, esp R. arnoldi, the flowers of which grow up to 45 cm (18 inches) across, smell of putrid meat, and are pollinated by carrion flies: family Rafflesiaceae
[C19: New Latin, named after T. S. Raffles, who discovered it]


(rəˈfli ʒə)

n., pl. -sias.
a stemless, leafless Malaysian plant of the genus Rafflesia, of the family Rafflesiaceae, bearing a flower that grows to 3 ft. (90 cm) in diameter, the world's largest.
[< New Latin (1821), after Stamford Raffles (1781–1826), British colonial administrator in Southeast Asia, who obtained the type specimen]
References in periodicals archive ?
A rare but very beautiful sight, or smell for that matter, can be found in the jungle of the park, the parasitic rafflesia plant whose giant flowers are over a meter wide in diameter and smell of rotting flesh, yes it's not pleasant but if caught in bloom, that would be a rare sight indeed since the flower only blooms a maximum of 5 days a year
It guarantees the flow of water into most of the rivers on Panay and it is a refuge for endangered species, such as the Dulungan Hornbill, and Rafflesia plants, that are are only to be found on the island and are threatened with extinction.
The park is famed for its biodiversity and its enormous Rafflesia flowers.
The country alone has over 8,000 species of flowering plants including the world's largest flower, the rafflesia.
Tickets to this year's Chelsea Flower Show are as rare as the Rafflesia.
uk New Internationalist's calendar features more than cute, mammals, raising awareness of the plight of the rafflesia flower and panda.
The flower with the world's largest bloom is the Rafflesia arnoldii.
There are endemic flora and fauna with species like Rafflesia located within Lata Jarum.
Technically, the world's largest individual flower is the Rafflesia, while the Titan Arum consists of a cluster of many flowers.
Among her bizarre 2007-08 Icelandic series of collages, we see a blond-haired girl clutching a kitten while a huge, parasitic Rafflesia flower blooms malevolently out of her mouth (Frioa og Snotra), based on local stories about elves switching out human babies for their own.
Also on display will be previously unpublished documents which reveal that Raffles sent a specimen of Rafflesia, the largest flower in the world discovered by him, to eminent Liverpool writer and botanist William Roscoe, described as "Liverpool's greatest citizen and founder of Liverpool culture.