Definition of Calabar bean in English:

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Calabar bean

noun

The poisonous seed of a tropical West African climbing plant, containing physostigmine and formerly used for tribal ordeals.
  • The plant is Physostigma venosum, family Leguminosae.
Example sentences
  • Julian was interested in medicinal plants, particularly the Calabar bean whose active principle, physostigmine, was first isolated by the German chemists Jobst and Hesse in 1864.
  • But since physostigmine could be isolated only from the Calabar bean, the drug was not readily available.
  • But since physostigmine could be isolated only from the Calabar bean, the drug was not readily available.

Origin

Late 19th century: named after Calabar.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: Cal·a·bar bean

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