One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A North American plant of the wintergreen family, with whorled evergreen leaves.
Chimaphila umbellata, family Pyrolaceae
- ‘Common pipsissewa is found in dry, shady woods, especially in pine forests, from New Brunswick to British Columbia and south to Georgia, Mexico, and California.’
- ‘Armed with a wildflower guidebook from the farm's library, I identify everything from pipsissewa to trailing arbutus.’
- 1.1mass noun A preparation of the leaves of the pipsissewa, used as a diuretic and tonic.
- ‘As a diuretic, pipsissewa helps "flush out" infectious microorganisms.’
- ‘Pipsissewa improves kidney and liver function by helping the body eliminate excess fluids.’
Late 18th century: from Eastern Abnaki, literally ‘flower of the woods’.
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