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shamrock

shamrock, a plant with leaves composed of three leaflets. According to legend it was used by St. Patrick in explaining the doctrine of the Trinity; it is now used as the emblem of Ireland. An artificial or real shamrock leaf is customarily worn on St. Patrick's Day. The actual species of the true shamrock has long been debated, but the plants most often favored and used are the white clover (Trifolium repens), the black medic (Medicago lupulina), the wood sorrel (Oxalis acetosella), and a hop clover (Trifolium minus). All are classified in the division Magnoliophyta, class Magnoliopsida. Trifolium and Medicago are in the order Rosales, family Leguminosae; Oxalis is in the order Geraniales, family Oxalidaceae.

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shamrock

shamrock the national emblem of Ireland, and traditionally said to have been employed by St Patrick to explain the nature of the Trinity. The shamrock of legend has been identified with a number of different related plants with three-lobed leaves.

The word is recorded in England from the late 16th century, and comes from Irish seamróg ‘trefoil’, diminutive of seamar ‘clover’.

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shamrock

sham·rock / ˈshamˌräk/ • n. a low-growing, cloverlike plant (esp. Trifolium minus) of the pea family, with three-lobed leaves, used as the national emblem of Ireland. ∎  a spray or leaf of this plant. ORIGIN: late 16th cent.: from Irish seamróg ‘trefoil’ (diminutive of seamar ‘clover’).

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shamrock

shamrock Plant with three-part leaves, usually taken to be Trifolium repens or T. dubium, the national emblem of Ireland. Legend tells that St Patrick used it to symbolize the Trinity. Other plants called shamrock include Oxalis acetosella and Medicago lupulina. Family Fabiaceae/Leguminosae.

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shamrock

shamrock XVI. — Ir. seamrǒg, dim. of seamar clover.

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shamrock

shamrock •matchlock • padlock • armlock •Belloc •deadlock, headlock, wedlock •hemlock • fetlock • airlock •breeze block • gridlock • ziplock •flintlock • Shylock •forelock, oarlock, warlock •roadblock • woodblock • sunblock •gunlock • lovelock • firelock •hammerlock • fetterlock • interlock •Enoch • kapok • epoch • shamrock •bedrock • pibroch • Sheetrock •Ragnarök • bedsock • windsock •shell shock • aftershock • fatstock •Bartók •deadstock, headstock •penstock • tailstock • feedstock •tick-tock • laughing stock • livestock •nostoc, Rostock, Vladivostok, Vostok •rootstock • Woodstock • bloodstock •gunstock

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