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1A European plant of the nettle family with greenish flowers, which grows on or at the foot of walls or in stony places.
- ‘Results of earlier prick tests and radioallergosorbent tests were positive for wall pellitory and grasses, and the tests resulted in a mild increase in peripheral blood eosinophil counts (0.6-0.7 x 10 / l (6-7%)).’
2A plant of the daisy family, "Anacyclus pyrethrum", with a pungent root once used as a remedy for toothache.
- ‘The root of pellitory possesses very pungent stimulating properties, which, when chewed, give a sharp and tingling sense of heat in the mouth, and excite a copious flow of saliva.’
- ‘In the thirteenth century we read in old records that Pellitory of Spain was 'a proved remedy for the toothache' with the Welsh physicians.’
Late Middle English: pellitory (sense 1) apparently an alteration of obsolete parietary, from Old French paritaire, based on Latin paries, pariet- ‘wall’; pellitory (sense 2) probably a variant of obsolete pelleter, via Old French from Latin pyrethrum pyrethrum.
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