herb·al | \ ˈ(h)ər-bəl \

Definition of herbal 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a book about plants especially with reference to their medicinal properties

2 archaic : herbarium sense 1



Definition of herbal (Entry 2 of 2)

: of, relating to, utilizing, or made of herbs

Examples of herbal in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

If the traditional glass of warm milk is not your cup of tea, head for the herbals. Karen Campbell, BostonGlobe.com, "Trouble sleeping? Let your senses be your guide," 12 July 2018 There’s no data at all that suggests that any herbals, any supplements, will treat influenza or modify the course of the disease. Andy Marso, kansascity, "What’s a parent to do about this record-setting flu? Here’s what you should know," 28 Jan. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

But while elite players are snacking on light fare including sushi, oatcakes with cream cheese, and herbal teas, this isn’t the first time that head coach Gareth Southgate has made headlines for cracking down on his player’s diets. Janine Puhak, Fox News, "English World Cup team refusing food from Russian room service over poisoning fears, source claims," 19 June 2018 According to a recent analysis, the rate of children taking alternative or herbal supplements nearly doubled, to 6.3% from 3.7%, between 2003 and 2014. Sumathi Reddy, WSJ, "Do Dietary Supplements Help or Hurt Children?," 2 July 2018 The rest of the drink skews fruity and herbal, thanks to pineapple juice and yellow Chartreuse, a French liqueur that adds a highbrow and slightly medicinal whiff to any cocktail. Marian Bull, GQ, "—Peter Meehan, Author Of An Upcoming Barbecue Book And Former Editor Of," 27 June 2018 Of the 10 cabernet sauvignons our panel judged at the El Dorado County Fair commercial wine competition, this was the most complex, herbal and spicy. Mike Dunne, sacbee, "This year's best local wine you can (mostly) get for under $20," 20 June 2018 Use of supplements that primarily contained vitamins and minerals remained stable over time, but use of herbal, non-vitamin, or non-mineral supplements increased, driven by the use of melatonin for sleep and omega-3s. Alexandra Sifferlin, Time, "A Third of Children Use Dietary Supplements. Here’s Why Researchers Say That’s Concerning," 18 June 2018 The scent was very herbal and a little woodsy, which has a nice, soothing quality. Ashley Weatherford, The Cut, "Here’s Why Michael B. Jordan Glistens on the Cover of Essence," 25 May 2018 This is one of two spots in the hotel where tea connoisseurs gather in the afternoon to choose from a tea menu that's nine pages long and includes black, green, white, oolong, herbal, decaffeinated and a host of non-tea beverages. Rosemary Mcclure, latimes.com, "Toast Prince Harry and Meghan Markle at one of London's finest afternoon teas," 13 May 2018 Signature fare: special coffees, herbal teas, a selection of organic snacks (including a corps of avocado toast options) and few decadent sweets. Andrew Ferren, WSJ, "How to Spend an Indulgent Day in Madrid for $2,400—or $400," 13 June 2018

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


1516, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1612, in the meaning defined above

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Phrases Related to herbal

herbal remedy

Statistics for herbal

Last Updated

24 Jul 2018

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Time Traveler for herbal

The first known use of herbal was in 1516

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More Definitions for herbal



English Language Learners Definition of herbal

: made of or relating to herbs


herb·al | \ ˈ(h)ər-bəl \

Medical Definition of herbal 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a book about plants especially with reference to their medical properties



Medical Definition of herbal (Entry 2 of 2)

: of, relating to, or made of herbs

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Comments on herbal

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


alleviating pain or harshness

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