quassia(redirected from quassias)
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a. A tropical American shrub or small tree (Quassia amara) having bright scarlet flowers and yielding a fine-grained, yellowish-white wood.
b. The wood of this plant.
2. A bitter substance obtained from the wood of this plant or related plants in the family Simaroubaceae, used in medicine and formerly as an insecticide.
[New Latin, after Gramman Quassi ("Great Man" Kwasi), an 18th-century Guinean who, after being enslaved and transported to Suriname, became renowned as a healer, especially by prescribing quassia for fever, and whose success eventually allowed him to purchase his freedom.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. (Plants) any tree of the tropical American simaroubaceous genus Quassia, having bitter bark and wood
2. (Forestry) the bark and wood of Quassia amara and of a related tree, Picrasma excelsa, used in furniture making
3. (Pharmacology) a bitter compound extracted from this bark and wood, formerly used as a tonic and anthelmintic, now used in insecticides
[C18: from New Latin, named after Graman Quassi, a slave who discovered (1730) the medicinal value of the root]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
quas•sia(ˈkwɒʃ ə, -i ə)
n., pl. -sias.
1. a shrub or small tree, Quassia amara, of tropical America, having pinnate leaves, showy red flowers, and wood with a bitter taste.
2. a prepared form of the wood of any of several trees of the genus Quassia, used as an insecticide or to dispel intestinal worms.
[1755–65; < New Latin, after Quassi, 18th-century slave in Dutch Guiana who discovered its medicinal properties]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
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|Noun||1.||quassia - a bitter compound used as an insecticide and tonic and vermifuge; extracted from the wood and bark of trees of the genera Quassia and Picrasma|
Jamaica quassia - similar to the extract from Quassia amara
organic compound - any compound of carbon and another element or a radical
|2.||quassia - handsome South American shrub or small tree having bright scarlet flowers and yielding a valuable fine-grained yellowish wood; yields the bitter drug quassia from its wood and bark|
bitterwood tree - any of various trees or shrubs of the family Simaroubaceae having wood and bark with a bitter taste
genus Quassia - tropical trees and shrubs with pinnate leaves and large scarlet flowers; bark is medicinal
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.