One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1The plant feverfew, Tanacetum parthenium.
2In form Matricaria. A genus of Eurasian plants of the family Asteraceae (Compositae), mostly having white ray florets and yellow discs, which includes wild chamomile, Matricaria recutita, and the pineapple weed, M. discoidea; (also matricaria) a plant of this genus.
Mid 17th century; earliest use found in John Evelyn (1620–1706), diarist and writer. From post-classical Latin matricaria feverfew, mugwort from classical Latin mātrīc-, mātrīx + -āria. Compare Spanish matricaria, Italian matricaria, Middle French, French matricaire, Portuguese matricária, and post-classical Latin matricalis, applied to the herb vervain.
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