One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1Any of a number of large water lilies.
(also 'sacred lotus') a lily of Asia and northern Australia, typically with dark pink or white-and-pink flowers (Nelumbo nucifera, family Nelumbonaceae)
(also 'Egyptian lotus') a lily regarded as sacred in ancient Egypt (the white-flowered Nymphaea lotus and the blue-flowered N. caerulea, family Nymphaeaceae)
(also 'American lotus') a yellow-flowered North American lily with bowl-shaped leaves (Nelumbo lutea, family Nelumbonaceae)
- ‘The pond is full of lotuses, with their red, blue, green, white and yellow flowers emitting rays of light of the same colors.’
- ‘Red lotuses floated on the surface of the water.’
- ‘Choose round containers for lotuses so future runners don't get jammed in square corners.’
- ‘You see Thais offering white lotuses, waving incense and kneeling in quiet prayer at the various temples to the Enlightened One.’
- ‘With a larger pond, you can have lilies or tiger lotus, maybe some taro or umbrella palm that will help shade the pond surface.’
- ‘Wild rice could have been found in the deeper waters of the backwater sloughs along with white water lily, American lotus, arrowleaf, duckweeds, and pondweed.’
- ‘We would play around the fountains, and if we had money to hire a boat from the boating club, go boating in the ponds navigating carefully through a crowd of lotuses and lilies.’
- ‘Dotted across the ponds lotus flowers and water lilies are coming into bloom.’
- ‘The stout tubers of the waterlily and the lotus are edible when properly prepared, and have been an important starch crop both in Asia and North America.’
- ‘The flower of summer was the lotus, autumn the chrysanthemum, winter the plum blossom, and spring the peony.’
- ‘A male bee enticed by the fragrance of the lotus flew into it.’
- ‘If tourists visit the garden in summer, they will be astonished by the pleasing green and red of thickly dotted lotuses.’
- ‘All water lilies and lotuses studied have aerenchyma.’
- ‘Many serious photographers were already in attendance to catch lotuses in full morning light.’
- ‘Apart from using the water, they can also be home to water plants such as lilies and lotuses.’
- ‘The water level is low, and red lotuses float on its surface.’
- ‘Many indigenous fish species in the lake, such as catfish, locally known as keting, melem and belida disappeared when people started taking the lotuses from the lake.’
- ‘In early summer, the new lotuses bud and come out of the water, so the green water is dotted with white and pink flowers.’
- ‘If your pond is at least three feet deep, you can experiment with wild rice, water lotus, and water lily.’
- ‘Only the local fishermen know their way through the maze of tall reeds to the oases of lotuses and water lilies concealed within.’
(in Greek mythology) a legendary plant whose fruit induces a dreamy forgetfulness and an unwillingness to depart.
- ‘The starving men ate the fruit, but Ulysses quickly understood that the lotus fruit destroyed men's memories.’
- ‘The music is inspired by the Ancient Greek myth of island dwellers whose diet of fruit from the lotus tree makes them forget their past troubles.’
3The flower of the sacred lotus as a symbol in Asian art and religion.‘a myth of creation states that Buddha was born of a thousand-petaled gold lotus’
- ‘Two Swords are crossed in inner and outer conflict today but the flowering lotus, a symbol of love, in the middle of the two swords brings peace and compromise.’
- ‘Ganesh offers her one of his enchanted lotus flowers so that she might visit Buddha in the sky.’
- ‘The lotus flower symbolises the complete purification of the defilements of the body, speech and mind, and the full blossoming of wholesome deeds in blissful liberation.’
- ‘The Asian sacred lotus represents the highest branch on the botanical family tree that shows heat generation.’
- ‘In one popular depiction, he sits on a lotus flower between the Hindu gods Brahm and Indra and creates a vast number of lotuses all with himself seated in their centers.’
4short for lotus position
Late 15th century (denoting a type of clover or trefoil, described by Homer as food for horses): via Latin from Greek lōtos, of Semitic origin. The term was used by classical writers to denote various trees and plants; the legendary plant ( lotus (sense 2)), mentioned by Homer, was thought by later Greek writers to be Ziziphus lotus, a relative of the jujube.
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