crocus

noun
cro·cus | \ˈkrō-kəs \
plural crocuses

Definition of crocus 

1a plural also crocus or croci\ˈkrō-ˌkē, -ˌkī, -ˌsī\ : any of a genus (Crocus) of herbs of the iris family developing from corms and having solitary long-tubed flowers and slender linear leaves

b : saffron sense 1a

2 : a dark red ferric oxide used for polishing metals

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Did You Know?

A low-growing plant with a corm, the crocus belongs to the iris family. There are about 75 species of crocus. They are native to the Alps, southern Europe, and the Mediterranean and are widely grown for their cuplike blooms in early spring or fall. The spring-flowering sorts have a floral tube so long that the ovary is below ground, sheltered from climatic changes. Saffron comes from a species of crocus that is native to western Asia. The alpine crocus is the chief ancestor of the common garden crocus.

Examples of crocus in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Humans, crocuses and daffodils alike with sun and warmth can keep their heads up! Maria Shine Stewart, cleveland.com, "Float over some drab days with song and hope: Sun Messages," 8 Apr. 2018 Daffodils, tulips, hyacinths, and crocuses have broken through, along with the blossoms of magnolia trees and crabapple trees, once again creating a palate of color. Chuck Crow, cleveland.com, "Lake View Cemetery's Daffodil Hill finally in full splendor (photos)," 6 May 2018 These are the daffodils, tulips, crocus and hyacinths sold ready to bloom in garden centers, grocery stores and other retailers. Jo Ellen Meyers Sharp, Indianapolis Star, "The Hoosier Gardener: Ornamental pear trees bad for environment," 20 Apr. 2018 Spring in France is protest season, and manifs (demos) sprout in the warmer weather like crocuses. The Economist, "Emmanuel Macron faces a wave of strikes and protests in France," 14 Apr. 2018 Biotech incubators are blooming like crocuses in Cambridge. Jonathan Saltzman, BostonGlobe.com, "Incubator aims to invest in its biotech tenants, too," 12 Apr. 2018 So far, the crocuses are out there, a month late, and daffodils are finally exploding. Sally Mccabe, Philly.com, "April 6-12: In the garden, it's time to… | Sally McCabe," 5 Apr. 2018 Here, the tulip hunter is rewarded with artistic compositions of tulips with their seasonal brethren, hyacinths, daffodils, crocuses and other springtime varieties. Colleen Barry, chicagotribune.com, "Nature shows off during Dutch tulip season," 8 Mar. 2018 Built by John, Second Duke of Montagu, in the 1770s, its colorful parade of snowdrops, crocuses, daffodils, and bluebells stretch from the house to as far as the moat. Michael Milne, Philly.com, "Beaulieu: Downton Abbey-Style Estate With Something for Everyone," 7 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'crocus.' 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 crocus

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for crocus

Middle English, the saffron plant, from Latin, from Greek krokos, of Semitic origin; akin to Akkadian kurkānū saffron

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Time Traveler for crocus

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

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More Definitions for crocus

crocus

noun

English Language Learners Definition of crocus

: a small purple, yellow, or white flower that blooms in the early spring

crocus

noun
cro·cus | \ˈkrō-kəs \

Kids Definition of crocus

: a small plant having grasslike leaves and colorful flowers that bloom in the spring

crocus

noun
cro·cus | \ˈkrō-kəs \
plural crocuses

Medical Definition of crocus 

1 plural also crocus or croci\-ˌkē, -ˌkī, -ˌsī \ : any of a large genus (Crocus) of perennial herbs of the iris family (Iridaceae)

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