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lig·num vi·tae(lĭg′nəm vī′tē)
n. pl. lignum vitaes
1. Any of several tropical American trees of the genus Guaiacum, especially G. officinale or G. sanctum, having evergreen leaves and very heavy, durable, resinous wood.
2. The wood of any of these trees, the hardest of commercial woods.
[New Latin lignum vītae : Latin lignum, wood + Latin vītae, genitive of vīta, life.]
lignum vitae(ˈlɪɡnəm ˈvaɪtɪ)
1. (Plants) either of two zygophyllaceous tropical American trees, Guaiacum officinale or G. sanctum, having blue or purple flowers
2. (Forestry) the heavy resinous wood of either of these trees, which is used in machine bearings, casters, etc: formerly thought to have medicinal properties
[New Latin, from Late Latin, literally: wood of life]
lig•num vi•tae(ˈlɪg nəm ˈvaɪ ti, ˈvi taɪ)
2. the hard, heavy wood of the guaiacum, used for making pulley heads, mallets, etc.
[1585–95; < New Latin, Late Latin, literally, wood of life]
A Latin phrase meaning wood of life, used to mean either of two types of tropical American tree.
Switch to new thesaurus
|Noun||1.||lignum vitae - hard greenish-brown wood of the lignum vitae tree and other trees of the genus Guaiacum|
Guaiacum officinale, lignum vitae - small evergreen tree of Caribbean and southern Central America to northern South America; a source of lignum vitae wood, hardest of commercial timbers, and a medicinal resin
wood - the hard fibrous lignified substance under the bark of trees
|2.||lignum vitae - small evergreen tree of Caribbean and southern Central America to northern South America; a source of lignum vitae wood, hardest of commercial timbers, and a medicinal resin|
genus Guaiacum, Guaiacum - small genus of evergreen resinous trees or shrubs of warm and tropical America
guaiac, lignum vitae, guaiacum - hard greenish-brown wood of the lignum vitae tree and other trees of the genus Guaiacum
guaiacum - medicinal resin from the lignum vitae tree