Definition of sabadilla in US English:



  • 1A Mexican plant of the lily family, whose seeds contain veratrine.

    Schoenocaulon officinale, family Liliaceae

    • ‘In that country there grows in abundance a species of seed in form and color like oats, and locally known as sabadilla.’
    • ‘It is not quite certain whether the seeds are obtained from the Veratrum sabadilla, a plant 3 or 4 feet high, or from the V. officinale, differing slightly in appearance and construction.’
    • ‘The drops contain the extracts of ingredients such as aphis, or ground honey bees, and plants such as euphrasia and sabadilla.’
    1. 1.1 A preparation of sabadilla seeds, used as an agricultural insecticide and in medicines.
      as modifier ‘sabadilla dust’
      • ‘One, sabadilla, is made from a lily and works as a contact and stomach poison for numerous insects.’
      • ‘Sabadilla is considered among the least toxic of botanical insecticides.’
      • ‘Sabadilla produces symptoms similar to those of a cold or hay fever, which it is used to treat homeopathically.’


Early 19th century: from Spanish cebadilla, diminutive of cebada ‘barley’.