• WordNet 3.6
    • n Polygonatum sometimes placed in subfamily Convallariaceae
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n polygonatum A genus of liliaceous plants, the Solomon's-seal, type of the tribe Polygonateæ. It is characterized by the nodding cylindrical flowers, having six short little-spreading lobes, and placed one or two or rarely more together at an axil, and by the undivided style and small stigma. There are 23 species, widely scattered through all north temperate regions. They bear a single erect, leafy stem from a horizontal thickened deep-buried or creeping rootstock, which is terminated by the upturned bud for the stem of the following year, and is marked by the circular scars of previous similar stems. These seal-like impressions gave the rootstock great fame for magic powers in the middle ages, as able to seal up and heal all wounds, having been stamped with the seal of Solomon, or of the Virgin Mary, whence the popular names Solomon's-seal and Our-Lady's-seal, the former of which is still in use. (See Solomon's seal and lady's-seal.) From its bell-like flowers, resembling a string of tintinnabula, by the monks ascribed to King David, the common English species, P. multiflorum, has derived the name David's-harp; also, from its upward series of leaves, ladder-to-heaven, and, from resemblances to other plants, lily-of-the-mountain and fraxinell
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In literature:

The novelties were a Polygonatum, Camellia, and Quercus lamellata.
"Journals of Travels in Assam, Burma, Bhootan, Afghanistan and TheNeighbouring Countries" by William Griffith