One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A plant of the daisy family with yellow flat-topped flower heads and aromatic leaves, formerly used in cooking and medicine.
Genus Tanacetum, family Compositae: several species, in particular common tansy (T. vulgare)
- ‘Another flavouring agent was alecost, Chrysanthemum balsamita, a plant from western Asia related to tansy which was brought to England sometime in the sixteenth century.’
- ‘Many herbs can help to deter flies, such as lavender, sweet woodruff, lemon verbena, star anise, tansy, any of the mints, rosemary, bay, chamomile, rue, elder, southernwood and basil.’
- ‘It is home to hundreds of species of wildflowers and grasses - including the tansy, meadowsweet, poppy, vetch and marigold - a host of butterflies, insects and beetles, and birds of prey such as the owl and kestrel.’
- ‘Plant tansy or basil around the patio and house to repel mosquitoes.’
- ‘This is how you pull tansy: plant your feet wide, bend your knees at a 90-degree angle, grasp the trunk of the tansy ragwort plant near the base, take a deep breath, and pull with everything you've got.’
Middle English: from Old French tanesie, probably from medieval Latin athanasia ‘immortality’, from Greek.
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