bab·​i·​a·​na | \ ˌbabēˈanə, -ˈä-, -ˈȧ- also -ˈā- \

Definition of babiana

1 capitalized : a genus of bulbous herbs (family Iridaceae) having showy red or yellow spicate flowers
2 plural -s : a plant of the genus Babiana

Love words?

You must — there are over 200,000 words in our free online dictionary, but you are looking for one that’s only in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.

Start your free trial today and get unlimited access to America's largest dictionary, with:

  • More than 250,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
  • Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
  • Advanced search features
  • Ad free!

First Known Use of babiana

1801, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for babiana

New Latin, from Dutch babianer, from obsolete Dutch babiaen baboon (now baviaan), from Middle French babouin baboon; from the fact that its stems are eaten by baboons

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about babiana

Time Traveler for babiana

Time Traveler

The first known use of babiana was in 1801

See more words from the same year

Statistics for babiana

Cite this Entry

“Babiana.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

Comments on babiana

What made you want to look up babiana? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Who Knew?

True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!