One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Any of several plants of the tropical genus Abelmoschus, especially A. moschatus, with aromatic seeds which yield a musky oil, formerly used medicinally and as a substitute for animal musk, and A. esculentus, the plant okra, cultivated for its edible seed pods; these pods themselves.
Early 18th century. From post-classical Latin abelmosch from Italian abelmosch (G. Pona Monte Baldo 29) from Arabic abū'l-misk, lit. ‘father (i.e. source) of musk’ from abū, construct state of ab father (cognate with Hebrew 'aḇ) + al the + misk. In later use after scientific Latin Abelmoschus, genus name.
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