bel·​la·​don·​na | \ ˌbe-lə-ˈdä-nə How to pronounce belladonna (audio) \

Definition of belladonna

1 : an Old World poisonous plant (Atropa belladonna) of the nightshade family having purple or green bell-shaped flowers, glossy black berries, and root and leaves that yield atropine

called also deadly nightshade

2 : a medicinal extract (such as atropine) from the belladonna plant

Examples of belladonna in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web One of the doctors called in to consult thought poisoning seemed likely, perhaps by opium or belladonna. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, 2 Jan. 2022 Even so, they were still regarded with skepticism and fear because botanists recognized them as relatives of the poisonous nightshade, belladonna. Washington Post, 4 Aug. 2021 Concentrated Medicinal Fluid Extracts contained belladonna, arsenic and mercury. New York Times, 27 Apr. 2021 Set out bulbs like Amaryllis belladonna, nerine, pineapple lily (Eucomis) canna, and calla. Sunset Magazine, 3 Aug. 2020 Many of the products were said to contain toxic substances, including belladonna, mercurius solubilis (mercury), and plumbum aceticum (lead). Beth Mole, Ars Technica, 16 June 2020 Stay away from teething tablets that contain the plant poison belladonna and gels with benzocaine. Marisa Lascala, Good Housekeeping, 9 Aug. 2019 In the most high-profile case, homeopathic teething products were found to contain toxic belladonna, aka deadly nightshade. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, 24 Aug. 2018 Know your ash from alder, your atropa belladonna from solanum nigrum?, 16 Jan. 2018 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'belladonna.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of belladonna

1597, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for belladonna

Italian, literally, beautiful lady

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The first known use of belladonna was in 1597

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Dictionary Entries Near belladonna

Bella Coola


belladonna lily

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Cite this Entry

“Belladonna.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for belladonna


bel·​la·​don·​na | \ ˌbel-ə-ˈdän-ə How to pronounce belladonna (audio) \

Medical Definition of belladonna

1 : an Old World poisonous plant of the genus Atropa (A. belladonna) having purple or green flowers, glossy black berries, and a root and leaves that yield atropine

called also deadly nightshade

2 : a medicinal preparation (as atropine) extracted from the belladonna plant and containing anticholinergic alkaloids

More from Merriam-Webster on belladonna

Nglish: Translation of belladonna for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about belladonna


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