One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A European woodland plant of the lily family, which has a single unbranched stem bearing a green and purple flower above four leaves.
Paris quadrifolia, family Liliaceae (or Trilliaceae)
- ‘This is why it is possible to find typical woodland species such as honeysuckle, dog's mercury, herb Paris and angular Solomon's seal in upland areas which are otherwise surrounded by tracts of grassland and moorland.’
- ‘Now the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Scotland's leading plant conservation centre, wants gardeners to plant colourful species such as the Scottish primrose, yellow rattle and herb Paris to save them for future generations.’
- ‘The ground flora is very rich with herb Paris, wild garlic, sweet woodruff, stone bramble and bird's nest orchid present.’
Translating medieval Latin herba paris, probably literally ‘herb of a pair’, referring to the resemblance of the four leaves to a true-love knot.
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