corpse flower


variants or less commonly corpse plant
: a tropical perennial herb (Amorphophallus titanum) of the arum family that is native to Sumatra and produces a tall, erect, yellowish-white spadix partly enclosed by a showy, white-spotted, green spathe which opens during bloom to reveal a reddish-purple interior and emit an odor of rotting flesh
Part of the reason the corpse flower is drawing such big crowds is because it rarely blooms. It is also one of the biggest, stinkiest plants on the planet …Lara Sorokanich

called also titan arum

Examples of corpse flower in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Queen of that bunch is the Titan Arum, simply known as the corpse flower (Amorphophallus titanium) because of the terrible smell of its blossoms. Neil Sperry, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 10 May 2024 As of 2021, the USBG estimated that there were fewer than 1,000 individual corpse flowers remaining in the wild — making seeing one of these plants in person a remarkable experience. Angel Saunders, Peoplemag, 29 Feb. 2024 Tobacco plants produce nicotine as an insecticide that deters predators; skunk cabbage and corpse flowers emit the stench of death to trick carrion-feeding insects into becoming their pollinators. Barbara Spindel, WSJ, 22 Dec. 2023 Another plant with a large flowering is the corpse flower, also known as Amorphophallus titanum, listed as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Emma Ogao, ABC News, 22 Sep. 2023 Often called corpse flowers or stinking corpse lilies, these blossoms are infamous for their distinctive odor of rotting flesh. Margaret Osborne, Smithsonian Magazine, 28 Sep. 2023 Parasitic, elusive, and emitting an overwhelming odor of putrefying flesh, Rafflesia—often called the corpse flower—has intrigued botanists for centuries. WIRED, 23 Sep. 2023 Since 1999, the Huntington has hosted 21 corpse flower blooms. Cari Spencer, Los Angeles Times, 25 Aug. 2023 Another rare corpse flower is set to bloom any day now at the Huntington Library, Art Museum and Botanical Gardens, unleashing its notoriously pungent odor into the conservatory. Cari Spencer, Los Angeles Times, 25 Aug. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'corpse flower.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1938, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of corpse flower was in 1938

Dictionary Entries Near corpse flower

Cite this Entry

“Corpse flower.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 May. 2024.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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