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n. pl. dar·nels
Any of several ryegrasses, especially Lolium temulentum.
[Middle English, of Old North French origin; akin to French dialectal darnelle, from darne, dizzy, dazed (darnel being so called because L. temulentum, a common weed of wheat fields, is often rendered toxic by a fungal infection similar to ergot, and consumption of bread made from flour contaminated with toxic darnel causes dizziness and lethargy), of Germanic origin; akin to -daert in Middle Dutch verdaert, dazed, and -turni in Old High German biturni, dazed, both perhaps akin to Middle Dutch deren, and Old High German tarēn, tarōn, to harm, ultimately of unknown origin.]
(Plants) any of several grasses of the genus Lolium, esp L. temulentum, that grow as weeds in grain fields in Europe and Asia
[C14: probably related to French (Walloon dialect) darnelle, of obscure origin]
any weedy grass of the genus Lolium.
[1275–1325; Middle English; compare French (Walloon) darnelle, probably < Germanic]