noun (1)
col·​um·​bine | \ ˈkä-ləm-ˌbīn How to pronounce columbine (audio) \

Definition of columbine

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: any of a genus (Aquilegia) of plants of the buttercup family with irregular showy spurred flowers: such as
a : a red-flowered plant (A. canadensis) of eastern North America
b : a blue-flowered plant (A. caerulea) of the Rocky Mountains


noun (2)
Col·​um·​bine | \ ˈkä-ləm-ˌbīn How to pronounce Columbine (audio) , -ˌbēn\

Definition of Columbine (Entry 2 of 2)

: the saucy sweetheart of Harlequin in comedy and pantomime

Illustration of columbine

Illustration of columbine

Noun (1)

columbine a

In the meaning defined above

Examples of columbine in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Situated in Colorado's Rocky Mountains, The Little Nell celebrates the beauty of the state by infusing the property with native plants (yarrows, daisies, and blue columbine to name a few) at every turn. Michaela Bechler, Vogue, "8 of the Most Beautiful Hotel Gardens in North America," 2 Oct. 2018 Among flowers, good bets are breadseed or ladybird poppies, California poppies, foxglove, nigella, columbine, nicotiana, bachelor’s buttons, cosmos, coreopsis, calendula and scabiosa. Pam Peirce,, "The joy of seed saving," 6 July 2018 Regretfully some like the peonies, iris and columbine still do not grow locally but others do. Tom Maccubbin,, "Great flowers that need an early start," 11 May 2018 Transplant petunias, marigolds and perennial flowers such as astilbe, columbine, coneflowers, coreopsis, dahlias, rudbeckia and verbena. Debbie Arrington, sacbee, "Want summer veggies? Get to work | The Sacramento Bee," 5 May 2018 Continue to deadhead: Remove faded, dead flowers from cool-season bedding plants, such as foxglove, columbine, snapdragon and dianthus. Dan Gill,, "This week's gardening tips: stake tomato plants and add sod," 29 Apr. 2018 Honey Dijon,’ and ‘Sombreuil’ roses, as well as a supporting cast of columbine, bearded iris, Japanese snowberry, honeysuckle, and plum. Sunset, "22 Favorite Roses to Grow," 22 Jan. 2018 After flowering, foxgloves, columbine and delphiniums should be pulled up., "This week's gardening tips: don't miss the camellia show," 27 Jan. 2018 The dry prairie along the bluff top is home to little bluestem, wild bergamot, columbine and silky aster — a colorful display in the spring. Chelsey Lewis, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Maiden Rock Bluff offers some of the best views along the Great River Road," 8 Mar. 2018

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

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First Known Use of columbine

Noun (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Noun (2)

1719, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for columbine

Noun (1)

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Medieval Latin columbina, from Latin, feminine of columbinus like a dove, from columba dove; akin to Old High German holuntar elder tree, Greek kolymbos a small grebe, kelainos black

Noun (2)

Italian Colombina

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The first known use of columbine was in the 14th century

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English Language Learners Definition of columbine

: a plant that has flowers with five petals that are thin and pointed


col·​um·​bine | \ ˈkä-ləm-ˌbīn How to pronounce columbine (audio) \

Kids Definition of columbine

: a plant that has leaves with three parts and showy flowers usually with five petals that are thin and pointed

More from Merriam-Webster on columbine

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with columbine Encyclopedia article about columbine

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