• WordNet 3.6
    • n crocus any of numerous low-growing plants of the genus Crocus having slender grasslike leaves and white or yellow or purple flowers; native chiefly to the Mediterranean region but widely cultivated
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Saffron, made from the dried stamens of cultivated crocus flowers, is the most expensive cooking spice.
    • Crocus (Chem) A deep yellow powder; the oxide of some metal calcined to a red or deep yellow color; esp., the oxide of iron (Crocus of Mars or colcothar) thus produced from salts of iron, and used as a polishing powder.
    • Crocus (Bot) A genus of iridaceous plants, with pretty blossoms rising separately from the bulb or corm. Crocus vernus is one of the earliest of spring-blooming flowers; Crocus sativus produces the saffron, and blossoms in the autumn.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n crocus A plant of the genus Crocus.
    • n crocus A genus of beautiful iridaceous plants, consisting of many hardy species, some of which are among the commonest ornaments of gardens. They are dwarf herbs, with fibrous-coated corms, and grass-like leaves appearing after the flowers. Crocuses are found chiefly in the middle and southern parts of Europe and the Levant, and are especially abundant in Greece and Asia Minor. Some of the species are vernal and others autumnal. The varieties in cultivation are very numerous, but mostly of vernal species, as these are the earliest of spring flowers. C. sativus yields the saffron of commerce, which consists of the orange stigmas of the flowers.
    • n crocus Saffron, obtained from plants of the genus Crocus. See saffron.
    • n crocus A polishing-powder prepared from crystals of sulphate of iron, calcined in crucibles. It is the calcined powder taken from the bottom of the crucible, where the heat is most intense. The powder in the upper part is called rouge. Crocus is of a purple color, is the harder, and is used for ordinary work. Rouge is of a scarlet color, and is used for polishing gold- and silver-work and specula. See colcothar.
    • n crocus In old chem., a yellowish or reddish impure oxid of some of the metals: as, crocus antimonii or crocus metallorum, an impure oxid of antimony obtained by deflagration of natural sulphid of antimony with saltpeter; crocus Martis, oxid of iron left on heating sulphate of iron to redness in the air; crocus Veneris, red oxid of copper obtained by heating copper in the air.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Crocus krō′kus a bulbous plant with brilliant yellow or purple flowers:
    • n Crocus krō′kus (slang) a quack doctor.
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L., saffron, fr. Gr. kro`kos; cf. Heb. karkōm, Ar. kurkum, Skr. kuṅkuma,
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L. crocus—Gr. krokos; prob. of Eastern origin, as Heb. karkom, and Ar. kurkum, saffron.


In literature:

Crocuses appeared everywhere with grape hyacinths and snow-drops.
"Athalie" by Robert W. Chambers
Few Spring flowers are more welcome or appear so very early in the year as crocuses.
"Little Folks (October 1884)" by Various
And here I have a bunch of crocuses, blue, yellow, white, and of many colors.
"Dramatic Reader for Lower Grades" by Florence Holbrook
Then the snowdrops and crocuses were out, and the sky grew black, and she sat on the nursery floor and looked up at it in solemn wonder.
"The Beth Book" by Sarah Grand
On all three points its virtues were so many that there is a complete literature on Crocus.
"The plant-lore and garden-craft of Shakespeare" by Henry Nicholson Ellacombe
Dinkie and Poppsy and I are going out to gather prairie-crocuses.
"The Prairie Child" by Arthur Stringer
I observed also a sort of crocus and some cheery little buttercups.
"The Trail of the Goldseekers" by Hamlin Garland
How pleasant it is, with the crocuses in all the borders already!
"Phoebe, Junior" by Mrs [Margaret] Oliphant
Toody ran close to the cage, and so did Crocus and Twig; and Kitty, a little farther off, stood staring and smiling.
"Boys and Girls Bookshelf (Vol 2 of 17)" by Various
I'll never look a crocus in the face again.
"Rope" by Holworthy Hall

In poetry:

The crocus, while the days are dark,
Unfolds its saffron sheen;
At April's touch the crudest bark
Discovers gems of green.
"The Year" by Coventry Patmore
O, follow, leaping blood,
The season's lure!
O heart, look down and up,
Serene, secure, Warm as the crocus cup,
Like snow-drops, pure!
"Early Spring" by Alfred Lord Tennyson
Earth, from a night of frosty wreck,
Enrobed in morning's mounted fire,
When lowly, with a broken neck,
The crocus lays her cheek to mire.
"The Thrush In February" by George Meredith
In gardens you may note amid the dearth
The crocus breaking earth;
And near the snowdrop's tender white and green,
The violet in its screen.
"Spring" by Henry Timrod
And Snowdrops starry and sweet,
Turn toward thee their pale pure faces
And Crocus, and Cowslips, and Daisies
The song of the spring-time repeat.
"With A Bunch Of Spring Flowers" by Kate Seymour Maclean
Among the delicate grasses and the bells
Of crocuses that spotted a rill side,
I picked up such a flute, and its clear swells
To my young lips replied.
"Honours -- Part II." by Jean Ingelow

In news:

I had forgotten that my friend Helen gave me these fall crocus last year,and to my amazement they came up.
Fall Crocus Click to enlarge.
This yellow crocus is a reminder that beautiful sunny days in the Southern Tier really ARE just around the corner.
Sunny Crocus Click to enlarge.
Phillip Foss accents lobster curry with crocus stigma.
Think of planting garlic as you would crocus: Put the bulbs in around mid- October, tip up, roots down, 1 to 2 inches deep.
Need a crocus or 2,000 to get you through the rest of winter.
The first lavender crocuses, yellow daffodils, hint of green on the trees and the songs of birds remind us that the earth is awakening and there is new life again with much to be enjoyed in the coming months.
Saffron crocus is valued for its bright red stamens uses for spice.
Saffron crocus provides plenty of spice bulbs, dry, crocus, plant, leaves, saffron, fall, red, little, grow.
Spring comes early to my garden in California: Cherry blossoms, freesias, and crocus begin to bloom in January.
Plant snowdrops under deciduous trees and shrubs, mixed with crocus tommasinianus and cyclamen coum.
It seems that there are many of these beautiful blooms which look like a crocus but are much larger and just popped up in the yard.
A Boston springtime brings with it more than just budding crocuses in Fenway Gardens and outdoor dining in the South End.
Saffron crocus, the new purple flower growing in Sequim.