heliotrope

\ \ [17] The heliotrope, a plant of the forget-me-not family, gets its name because its flowers always turn to face the sun (the word comes via Latin hēliotropium from Greek hēliotrópion, a compound formed from héliossun’ and -troposturning’ – as in English trophy and tropical – which designated such plants, and was also used for ‘sundial’). In early times the word was applied to the ‘sunflower’, which has similar heliotactic habits and in Italian is called girasole (literally ‘turn-sun’), source of the Jerusalem in English Jerusalem artichoke.
\ \ Another application of Greek hēliotrópion carried over into English was to a sort of green quartz which was believed to turn the sun’s rays blood-red if thrown into water.
\ \ Cf.TROPHY, TROPICAL

Word origins - 2ed. . 2005.

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  • héliotrope — [ eljɔtrɔp ] n. m. • eliotropie 1372; lat. d o. gr. heliotropium « pierre précieuse » et « tournesol » 1 ♦ Plante à feuilles alternes et persistantes, à fleurs odorantes (borraginacées), des régions chaudes et tempérées. L héliotrope d Europe, à… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Heliotrope — may mean:* Heliotropium , a plant genus * A plant that exhibits heliotropism * Heliotrope (color), a pink purple shade * Heliotrope (instrument), a land surveying instrument *Heliotrope E Zine Speculative Fiction E zine * Heliotrope (mineral),… …   Wikipedia

  • Heliotrope — Héliotrope Pour les articles homonymes, voir Héliotrope (homonymie) …   Wikipédia en Français

  • heliotrope — [hē′lē ə trōp΄; ] also, chiefly Brit [, hel′ē ətrōp] n. [Fr héliotrope < L heliotropium < Gr hēliotropion < hēlios, the sun (see HELIOS) + base of trepein, to turn (see TROPE)] 1. Obs. a sunflower or other plant whose flowers turn to… …   English World dictionary

  • Heliotrope — He li*o*trope, n. [F. h[ e]liotrope, L. heliotropium, Gr. ?; ? the sun + ? to turn, ? turn. See {Heliacal}, {Trope}.] 1. (Anc. Astron.) An instrument or machine for showing when the sun arrived at the tropics and equinoctial line. [1913 Webster]… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • heliotrope — plant which turns its flowers and leaves to the sun, 1620s, from Fr. héliotrope (14c.) and directly from L. heliotropium, from Gk. heliotropion, from helios sun (see SOL (Cf. sol)) + tropos turn (see TROPE (Cf. trope)). The word was applied… …   Etymology dictionary

  • heliotrope — HELIOTROPE. s. m. Autrement nommée Tourne sol, Fleur jaune qui vient dans l automne, & qui selon les naturalistes se tourne tousjours vers le soleil …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • heliotrope — /hee lee euh trohp , heel yeuh / or, esp. Brit., /hel yeuh /, n. 1. any hairy plant belonging to the genus Heliotropium, of the borage family, as H. arborescens, cultivated for its small, fragrant purple flowers. 2. any of various other plants,… …   Universalium

  • héliotrope — (é li o tro p ) s. m. 1°   Genre de plantes de la famille des borraginées, où l on distingue l héliotrope, heliotropium europaeum, L., dit aussi herbe aux verrues, et l heliotropium peruvianum, L., cultivé pour la beauté et surtout pour la bonne… …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • HÉLIOTROPE — s. m. T. de Botan. Genre de plantes qui contient une cinquantaine d espèces : les plus connues sont l Héliotrope du Pérou, fort recherché à cause de l odeur suave de ses fleurs, qui lui a fait donner aussi le nom de Vanille par les jardiniers ;… …   Dictionnaire de l'Academie Francaise, 7eme edition (1835)

  • Héliotrope — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Héliotrope (homonymie). Heliotropium …   Wikipédia en Français

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