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1. A delphinium (Delphinium staphisagria) of southern Europe, having purple or blue flowers.
2. The poisonous seeds of this plant, formerly used medicinally especially to kill external parasites such as lice.

[By folk etymology (influenced by stave acre) from Middle English staphisagre, from Latin staphis agria, from Greek staphis agriā (literally, "wild raisin," from the raisinlike appearance of the seeds ) : staphis, raisin, stavesacre (from variant of earlier astaphis, raisin; perhaps akin to staphulē, bunch of grapes; see staphylo-) + agriā, feminine of agrios, wild; see agro- in Indo-European roots.]
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) a Eurasian ranunculaceous plant, Delphinium staphisagria, having purple flowers and poisonous seeds
2. (Plants) the seeds of this plant, which have strong emetic and cathartic properties
[C14 staphisagre, from Latin staphis agria, from Greek, from staphis raisin + agria wild]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
References in periodicals archive ?
The specific member of this family that Felipe needed was Staphysagria (stavesacre.) From the Substance of Homeopathy by Dr.
Liniments of vinegar, something called stavesacre, honey, sulphur and oil, would destroy mice in your wig in the 18th Century.
This comes from crushed Stavesacre seeds and the solution can be mixed with a mild shampoo or used as part of a final rinse, along with an internal remedy which can help to build up the child's immune system and prevent re-infection.