: the fruit of a European or American mountain ash

Illustration of rowan

Illustration of rowan
  • leaves and fruit

Examples of rowan in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In southeast London’s Brockley Hill Park, opera singer Tristan Hambleton has been using a watering can to sustain a rowan sapling amid a parched meadow. Luke Vargas, WSJ, 29 Aug. 2022 As the island’s ice cap melts, the land is becoming more habitable for trees, of which there are four native species, most significantly the rowan or mountain ash. Nancy Lord, Anchorage Daily News, 15 May 2022 The stone structure had fallen into disrepair over the centuries, so the team removed an invading rowan tree and cleaned up its collapsed walls. Theresa MacHemer, Smithsonian Magazine, 28 Apr. 2020 Tiny gardens: rowan tree, cherry tree, silver birch, ornamental willow—a horrible pompom on a stick. Anne Enright, The New Yorker, 2 Mar. 2020 But what set the houses off, made them seem jewel-like, were the huge oaks and small sassafras and maples, the chestnuts, rowans. Jane Smiley, New York Times, 14 Oct. 2019

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'rowan.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


of Scandinavian origin; akin to Norwegian dialect raun rowan; akin to Old English rēad red — more at red

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Time Traveler
The first known use of rowan was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near rowan

Cite this Entry

“Rowan.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Jun. 2024.

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