One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A tall, rapidly-growing tree of South-East Asia, Pterocarpus indicus (family Fabaceae (Leguminosae)), which bears panicles of fragrant orange or yellow fruit. Also: the decorative wood of this tree, used for cabinetmaking (also called amboyna wood, Andaman redwood, Burmese rosewood, etc.).
Late 18th century; earliest use found in Theodosius Forrest (c1728–1784), lawyer and songwriter. From Tagalog nara.
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