One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A tree of the genus Adansonia (family Malvaceae) comprising the baobab trees of Africa (particularly Madagascar) and Australia; especially the African species A. digitata of west and central Africa, and the Australian baobab, A. gregorii.
Mid 18th century; earliest use found in Philip Miller (1691–1771), horticulturist and writer. From scientific Latin Adansonia (Linnaeus Species plantarum II. 1190) from the name of Michel Adanson, French naturalist + scientific Latin -ia.
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