Definition of scammony in US English:



  • A plant of the morning glory family, the dried roots of which yield a strong purgative.

    Two species in the family Convolvulaceae: Convolvulus scammonia of Asia, and Ipomoea orizabensis of Mexico

    • ‘When he says that hops purges choler, he doesn't mean in the same way as scammony does.’
    • ‘For instance, the knowledge of the causal power of scammony to purge red bile arises only after we observe a number of cases where it does this, and so come to form an aestimatio that it does in this or that particular case.’


Old English, from Old French escamonie or Latin scammonia, from Greek skammōnia.