Definition of wintergreen in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈwin(t)ərˌɡrēn/


1A North American plant from which a pungent oil is obtained, in particular the checkerberry or related shrubs.
Example sentences
  • Other wildflowers to look for are western mountain aster, meadow rue, pink wintergreen, and Chinese houses (a plant in the snapdragon family).
  • This wintergreen plant grows mainly in the vicinity of penguin colonies and the gathering places of large mammals, where it usually forms extensive closed swards in larger or smaller clusters.
  • Evergreen candytuft and Liriope remain green, while wintergreen and Epimedium turn bronze or purple-red.
1.1 (also oil of wintergreen) A pungent oil containing methyl salicylate, now obtained chiefly from the sweet birch or made synthetically, used medicinally and as a flavoring.
Example sentences
  • An ester, methyl salicylate, familiar as oil of wintergreen, is also a phenolic compound.
  • Having once formed coumarin from coal tar, this led to artificial musk and then to the artificial production of the scents of violets, roses, jasmine and the smell of the year - oil of wintergreen.
  • A suitable rub for stiff areas can be made up as follows: 2 drops eucalyptus oil; 2 drops oil of wintergreen; 5 drops lavender oil; 3 drops rosemary oil; 1 drop black pepper oil.
2A low-growing plant of acid soils in north temperate regions, with spikes of white bell-shaped flowers.
  • Chimaphila, Pyrola and other genera, family Pyrolaceae (the wintergreen family): several species, including the spotted wintergreen (C. maculata).
Example sentences
  • Other species include trailing arbutus, bearberry, wintergreen, inkberry, sweet fern, flowering pixie moss, and cowwheat.
  • The garden is only a garden, shrubs and grass and wintergreen trees, and birds, and there is never anybody in that garden, and there is nothing you could do there, except sneak up to the windows and spy on the Mistress.
  • They experimented with cherry, wintergreen, grape, peppermint, and cinnamon: Kramm would taste each by taking a bit on his fingertip and touching it to his tongue, then rinsing his mouth with water.


Mid 16th century: the plants so named because of remaining green in winter, suggested by Dutch wintergroen, German Wintergrün.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: win·ter·green

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