One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
An Asian fan palm which yields a wide range of useful products, including timber, fibre, and fruit.
Borassus flabellifer, family Palmae
- ‘For commoners, it was umbrella hats made from palmyra or the dried leaf of arecanut palm conically folded like a conjurer's hat.’
- ‘According to a dietician at the Hospital, fruits like watermelon, tender coconuts, palmyra, lime and cucumber are diuretic and hence play a vital role in eliminating body heat.’
- ‘The palmyra palm being the most useful of the species is widely grown in tropical coastal zones.’
- ‘The carving abounded in motifs from nature including swallows, hydrangeas, azaleas, geraniums, lilies, palmyras, and balloon vines.’
- ‘From the fan-shaped leaves to the root, the palmyra palm forms an intrinsic part of the life and cuisine of this region.’
Late 17th century: from Portuguese palmeira ‘palm tree’. The change in the ending was due to association with the name of the city of Palmyra.
An ancient city of Syria, an oasis in the Syrian desert north-east of Damascus on the site of present-day Tadmur.
Greek form of the city's modern and ancient pre-Semitic name Tadmur or Tadmor, meaning ‘city of palms’.
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