hy·​a·​cinth | \ ˈhī-ə-(ˌ)sin(t)th How to pronounce hyacinth (audio) , -sən(t)th \

Definition of hyacinth

1a : a precious stone of the ancients sometimes held to be the sapphire
b : a gem zircon or hessonite
2a : a plant of the ancients held to be a lily, iris, larkspur, or gladiolus
b : a bulbous perennial herb (Hyacinthus orientalis) of the lily family that is native to the Mediterranean region but is widely grown for its dense spikes of fragrant flowers — compare grape hyacinth, water hyacinth
3 : a light violet to moderate purple

Illustration of hyacinth

Illustration of hyacinth

hyacinth 2b

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Other Words from hyacinth

hyacinthine \ ˌhī-​ə-​ˈsin(t)-​thən How to pronounce hyacinth (audio) \ adjective

Examples of hyacinth in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Tulip and hyacinth bulbs should be stored in your refrigerator until late December or early January and planted then. Dan Gill, NOLA.com, "With some signs of cooler weather creeping in, it's time to start planning your fall garden," 16 Sep. 2020 Grape hyacinth doesn’t grow very tall, so plant it at the front of flower beds and borders. Andrea Beck, Better Homes & Gardens, "The Best Bulbs to Plant in Fall to Help Pollinators Come Springtime," 20 Aug. 2020 The top flowers throughout the U.S. from March through May 2020 include: calla lilies, hyacinth, cyclamen, lily, freesia, African violet, peonies, gardenia, buttercup, and gladiolus. Isabel Garcia, House Beautiful, "This Study Reveals the Most Popular Flowers in Every State," 6 July 2020 Keukenhof is the world’s largest bulb-flower garden, with over 800 varieties of tulips, hyacinths, crocuses, and daffodils, and over seven million individual bulbs that bloom every year, Lonely Planet reported. Andrea Romano, Travel + Leisure, "See the Most Colorful Tulip Fields in the Netherlands Without Leaving Your House This Year (Video)," 16 Apr. 2020 Maintain Bring potted bulbs like daffodils, hyacinths, and tulips out of cold storage and plant them in a warm, sunny spot in the garden. Heather Arndt Anderson, Sunset Magazine, "Your Ultimate Spring Gardening To-Do List for March and April," 16 Mar. 2020 Meanwhile in Yosemite, visitors will find hyacinth growing along Hornitos Road and lupines blanketing the hills. Sunny Fitzgerald, Washington Post, "The fields are alive: How to view a wildflower bloom without destroying it," 13 Mar. 2020 Count tulips in the Netherlands March 21–May 10 | Lisse, Netherlands | Less than an hour outside Amsterdam, Keukenhof Gardens shows off nearly 80 acres of tulips, daffodils, and hyacinths—check the website for what’s in bloom and when. National Geographic, "5 must-do travel experiences in March," 28 Feb. 2020 The Put-in-Bay garden has an outdoor bar and dining area, the South Bass Island Lighthouse and surrounding ponds and waterfalls, accented with tulips, azaleas, roses and hyacinths. Roxanne Washington, cleveland, "The Great Big Home + Garden Show begins Friday, Jan. 31, at Cleveland’s I-X Center," 26 Jan. 2020

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

1553, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for hyacinth

Latin hyacinthus, a precious stone, a flowering plant, from Greek hyakinthos

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Time Traveler for hyacinth

Time Traveler

The first known use of hyacinth was in 1553

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Cite this Entry

“Hyacinth.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hyacinth. Accessed 24 Feb. 2021.

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More Definitions for hyacinth



English Language Learners Definition of hyacinth

: a type of plant that is grown in gardens and has flowers that smell sweet


hy·​a·​cinth | \ ˈhī-ə-sinth How to pronounce hyacinth (audio) \

Kids Definition of hyacinth

: a plant often grown for its stalks of fragrant flowers shaped like bells

More from Merriam-Webster on hyacinth

Nglish: Translation of hyacinth for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about hyacinth

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