si·​le·​ne | \sīˈlēnē\

Definition of silene 

1 capitalized : a very large and widely distributed genus of plants (family Caryophyllaceae) having mostly showy flowers of various colors with a 10-nerved 5-toothed calyx and 3 styles and fruit with a capsule opening by 3 or 6 teeth — see bladder campion, catchfly, moss campion, wild pink — compare lychnis

2 plural -s : any plant of the genus Silene

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History and Etymology for silene

New Latin, probably from Latin silenus silenus

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obstinately defiant of authority

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