lupine

1 of 2

noun

lu·​pine ˈlü-pən How to pronounce lupine (audio)
variants or less commonly lupin
: any of a genus (Lupinus) of leguminous herbs including some poisonous forms and others cultivated for their long showy racemes of usually blue, purple, white, or yellow flowers or for green manure, fodder, or their edible seeds
also : an edible lupine seed

lupine

2 of 2

adjective

lu·​pine ˈlü-ˌpīn How to pronounce lupine (audio)

Did you know?

Lupine comes from lupus, Latin for "wolf", and its related adjective lupinus, "wolfish". Lupine groups have a highly organized social structure, with leaders and followers clearly distinguished; dogs, since they're descended from wolves, often show these lupine patterns when living in groups. Stories of children raised by wolves (the most famous being Romulus, the legendary founder of Rome) have generally been hard to prove, partly because "wild" children lack human language abilities and can't describe their experiences. Lupine is also a noun, the name of a well-known garden flower, which was once thought to drain, or "wolf", the soil of its nutrients.

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Mineral King, the six-mile (one way) path to Franklin Lakes climbs past fields of crimson columbine and bright purple lupine to the base of Florence Peak. Emily Pennington, Outside Online, 1 Nov. 2022 Shown here are seed pods of lupine, common milkweed, hibiscus, and money plant (Lunaria annua), which produces seeds enclosed in translucent silvery discs. Penelope O'sullivan, Better Homes & Gardens, 9 Aug. 2022 In this parallel world, lupine lore tells of a human child who will speak for the wolves. Meghan Cox Gurdon, WSJ, 2 Sep. 2022 The bee meadow mix consisted of perennial sunflower (Helianthus), black-eyed Susan, blanket flower (Gaillardia), California poppy, tickweed (Coreopsis), lupine, borage and phacelia. oregonlive, 18 July 2022 Roadside pops of color, courtesy of lupine, penstemon, clover, thistle and blooming shrubs, brighten meadows while tiny waterholes harbor mini wetland environs rife with water buttercups, frogs and elk. Mare Czinar, The Arizona Republic, 15 July 2022 Fender’s blue butterflies are only found in the Willamette Valley, living in prairie meadows among the Kinkaid’s lupine. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 4 July 2022 Aside from poppies, bush sunflowers, wooly blue curls, lupine, black sage, ceanothus and other plants are popping along trails in the Santa Monica Mountains. Los Angeles Times, 17 Mar. 2022 Here lupine provide the foreground with pink poppies in the background. Nicole Cammorata, BostonGlobe.com, 19 June 2022
Adjective
Its cover recalls a vintage GeoCities website: black background, underlined gold text, thumbnail-sized etching of a woman and her lupine companion. Amanda Hess, New York Times, 17 Dec. 2019 Every few months an Italian landowner, angry at having lost livestock to lupine jaws, will shoot a wolf and dump its corpse by the roadside – sometimes mutilated or decapitated – in protest against government policy. Nick Squires, The Christian Science Monitor, 29 Sep. 2017 Lupine fix nitrogen from the air in their roots and leaves, and are helping to nourish the ground, said Josh Chenoweth, restoration botanist for the park. Lynda V. Mapes, The Seattle Times, 3 July 2017 Nimitz frequently took hikes in Tilden, particularly around the Botanic Garden and the roadway at Inspiration Point that would be named for him, and would scatter lupine seeds along the way of his weekly outings. Chris Treadway, The Mercury News, 4 June 2017 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin lupinus, lupinum, from lupinus, adjective

Adjective

Latin lupinus, from lupus wolf — more at wolf

First Known Use

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

1660, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of lupine was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near lupine

Cite this Entry

“Lupine.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lupine. Accessed 9 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

lupine

noun
lu·​pine
variants also lupin
ˈlü-pən
: any of a genus of herbs of the legume family including some poisonous ones and others grown for their showy spikes of colorful flowers or for green manure, fodder, or their edible seeds

Medical Definition

lupine

noun
lu·​pine
variants also lupin
: any of a genus (Lupinus) of leguminous herbs some of which cause lupinosis and others are cultivated for green manure, fodder, or their edible seeds
also : an edible lupine seed

More from Merriam-Webster on lupine

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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