Definition of ceiba in English:



  • A very tall tropical American tree from which kapok is obtained, with lightweight yellowish or pinkish timber.

    Ceiba pentandra, family Bombacaceae

    Also called kapok
    • ‘The tree most often used for these rituals is the ceiba, known as nkunia nsambi, the branch of god (nsambi).’
    • ‘Just before he falls asleep he remembers a vast expanse of sugar cane, he remembers the still air, the sun beating down on the red earth and far off in the distance a ceiba tree that was haunted by the spirits of murdered slaves.’
    • ‘Except for two years with the Cuban army in Angola, he has spent his life here, exploring every ceiba tree of the Caribbean's largest wetland.’
    • ‘The book is about two taxa: the live oaks that dominate the coastal Louisiana landscape and the ceibas, the signature tree of the Guatemalan lowlands.’
    • ‘The rusting set of free weights is scattered under a ceiba tree.’


Via Spanish from Taino, literally ‘giant tree’.