One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A herbaceous plant of the daisy family with burred fruits, native to tropical America but now found all over the world.
Genus Xanthium, family Compositae: two or three species
- ‘A green stripe of broad clotbur (Xanthium strumarium, or lachid hanehalim in Hebrew), a plant that grows in habitats in which there are seasonal water pools, attested that the leaks are a routine matter here.’
- ‘Beach clotbur has rough, sandpapery, triangular leaves and sharp burry fruits.’
- ‘Spiny clotbur has upright growth habit, long shiny dark green leaves, cactuslike spines and seeds like cocklebur (which it is related to).’
- 1.1North American A burdock.
Mid 16th century: from dialect clote ‘burdock’ + burr.
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