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corn cockle

Syllabification: corn cock·le
(also corncockle)

Definition of corn cockle in English:

noun

A Mediterranean plant with bright pink or purple flowers and poisonous seeds, introduced into Britain and North America. If unchecked, it can be a prolific weed in fields of grain. It is often cultivated as a showy annual.
  • Agrostemma githago, family Caryophyllaceae
Example sentences
  • Other imports include the poisonous corncockle from the Mediterranean, the Himalayan balsam and the New Zealand willowherb, an aggressive weed.
  • An arable area at the Kew Royal Botanic Gardens - part of the Go Wild festival - includes a crop with key colourful plants like common poppy, corn marigold and corncockle, plus some clover and a ‘game strip’ down one side.
  • In many ways this is rural France's most appealing region, an area of winding back roads, of lost-and-gone hamlets, of tree-smothered hills and of wheat fields bright with poppies and corncockles.

Origin

early 18th century: from corn1 + cockle (from Old English coccul 'corn cockle', perhaps via Latin from Greek kokkos 'berry').

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