pim·​per·​nel | \ ˈpim-pər-ˌnel How to pronounce pimpernel (audio) , -pər-nəl \

Definition of pimpernel

: any of a genus (Anagallis) of herbs of the primrose family especially : scarlet pimpernel

Examples of pimpernel in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Scarlet pimpernel is also sometimes called poison chickweed. Arkansas Online, 22 Mar. 2021 Scarlet pimpernel has a prostrate and spreading habit and without blooms is often mistaken for chickweed. Arkansas Online, 22 Mar. 2021

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

First Known Use of pimpernel

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for pimpernel

Middle English pimpernele, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin pimpinella, a medicinal herb

Learn More About pimpernel

Time Traveler for pimpernel

Time Traveler

The first known use of pimpernel was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near pimpernel



pimpernel root

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for pimpernel

Cite this Entry

“Pimpernel.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pimpernel. Accessed 29 Sep. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on pimpernel

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pimpernel


Test Your Vocabulary

The Great British Vocabulary Quiz

  • union jack speech bubble
  • Named after Sir Robert Peel, what are British police called?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!