One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A North American or Asian tree of damp and swampy habitats, which yields useful timber.
Genus Nyssa, family Nyssaceae: several species, in particular N. sylvatica (also called pepperidge)
- ‘The champion tupelos have immense, gnarled bulbous bases - each with hollow sections.’
- ‘From within I could see tupelo and buckthorn budding,’
- ‘If rhododendrons thrive on your soil, plant the Pagoda Bush or the Chinese tupelo.’
- ‘Frame-by-frame analyses show a bird perched on a tupelo trunk, with a distinctive white pattern on its back.’
Mid 18th century: from Creek, from ito ‘tree’ + opilwa ‘swamp’.
A city in north-eastern Mississippi; population 36,233 (est. 2008). The site of some Civil War battles, it is also the birthplace of Elvis Presley.
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