Definition of arbor vitae in US English:

arbor vitae

(also arborvitae)

noun

  • A North American and eastern Asian evergreen coniferous tree of the cypress family.

    Genus Thuja, family Cupressaceae: several species, in particular the northern white cedar (see white cedar)

Origin

Mid 16th century: from Latin, literally ‘tree of life’, probably with reference to its medicinal use.

Pronunciation

arbor vitae

/ˌärbər ˈvīdē//ˌɑrbər ˈvaɪdi/