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henna

hen·na / ˈhenə/ • n. 1. the powdered leaves of a tropical shrub, used as a dye to color the hair and decorate the body. 2. the Old World shrub (Lawsonia inermis, family Lythraceae) that produces these leaves, with small pink, red, or white flowers. • v. (hennas, hennaed / ˈhenəd/ , hennaing) [tr.] dye (hair) with henna. • adj. reddish-brown.

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henna

henna, name for a reddish or black hair dye obtained from the powdered leaves and young shoots of the mignonette tree, or henna shrub (Lawsonia inermis), an Old World shrub of the loosestrife family. Henna dye has long been in use, as evidenced by Egyptian mummies; the dye is also to decorate the skin with designs.

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henna

henna (Egyptian privet) Small shrub, native to the Middle East and n Africa. Since ancient times, people have extracted a red-brown dye from the leaves to colour hair and skin. Family Lythraceae; species Lawsonia inerma.

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henna

henna (dye obtained from) Egyptian privet, Lawsonia inermis. XVI. — Arab. hinnā'.

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henna

hennaAlana, Anna, bandanna, banner, Branagh, canna, canner, Diana, fanner, Fermanagh, Guyana, Hannah, Havana, hosanna, Indiana, Joanna, lanner, Louisiana, manna, manner, manor, Montana, nana, planner, Pollyanna, Rosanna, savannah, scanner, spanner, Susanna, tanner •Abner • Jaffna • Patna • caravanner •Africana, Afrikaner, Americana, ana, banana, Botswana, bwana, cabana, caragana, Christiana, Dana, darner, Edwardiana, garner, Georgiana, Ghana, Gloriana, Guiana, gymkhana, Haryana, iguana, Lana, lantana, liana, Lipizzaner, Ljubljana, Mahayana, mana, mañana, marijuana, nirvana, Oriana, pacarana, piranha, prana, Purana, Rosh Hashana, Santayana, Setswana, sultana, Tatiana, Tijuana, Tirana, tramontana, Tswana, varna, Victoriana, zenana •Gardner • partner •antenna, Avicenna, duenna, henna, Jenna, Jenner, Morwenna, Ravenna, senna, Siena, sienna, tenner, tenor, Vienna •Edna • interregna • Etna • Pevsner

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Henna

HENNA

HENNA (Heb. כֹּפֶר, kofer), the plant Lawsonia alba whose leaves yield a much-used dye. Its English name is derived from Arabic. Henna is included among the spices growing in the garden of tropical spices to which the beloved maiden is compared in Song of Songs (4:12–13), while she compares her beloved to "a cluster of henna in the vineyards of En-Gedi" (ibid. 1:14). The Mishnah mentions henna alongside the rose among the aromatic plants that grow in Ereẓ Israel (Shev. 7:6). The henna of "Ashkelon in Judea" was praised by Pliny (Historia Naturalis, 12:51) and Dioscorides (De materia medica, 1:117). According to Josephus (Wars 1:181), the name of Herod's mother was Cypros (Κύπρος), that is kofer, and he called a fortress which he built "Cypros" after her. Henna is a shrub which is grown in various places in the Jordan Valley and in the Shephelah. Its aromatic flowers are arranged in clusters (hence the "cluster of henna"). From its root or leaves a powder is prepared which is soluble in water and produces a reddish-orange dye. Throughout the ages the peoples of the East prized this beautiful, fast dye which was used for dying the hair, the palms of the hand, the nails, and even the teeth. With it the Egyptians dyed mummies. The Talmud (tj, Git. 69b) mentions henna as a remedy for a disease of the urinary organs. In Yemen, Jews smeared a bride's body with henna dye (the person doing it pays for the privilege with a wedding gift) and hence the name "henna night" given by them to a marriage. The custom is still maintained by several communities in Israel.

bibliography:

Loew, Flora, 2 (1924), 218–25; H.N. and A.L. Moldenke, Plants of the Bible (1952), index; J. Feliks, Olam ha-Ẓome'aḥ ha-Mikra'i (19682), 270–1. add bibliography: Feliks, Ha-Ẓome'aḥ, 84.

[Jehuda Feliks]

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Henna

Henna

Henna, species Lawsonia intermis of the family Lythracea, is a perennial shrub that grows wild in northern Africa and southern Asia. The name henna, which comes from the Arabic word al kenna, refers to both the plant and the dye that comes from the leaves. The henna plant has narrow grayish-green leaves and small sweet-smelling clustered flowers that are white, yellow, or rose in color.

One of the oldest-known hair dyes, henna is still used worldwide. The leaves are dried, pulverized, mixed with hot water, and then made into a paste that is applied to the hair, and later rinsed out, leaving a reddish tint. Women in Muslim countries use henna to color their nails, hands, feet, and cheeks. In India, some brides use henna to stain a beautifully intricate design on their hands. The Berbers of North Africa believe henna represents blood and fire, and that it links humankind to nature. Henna is used in Berber marriage ceremonies because it is thought that henna has special seductive powers and that it symbolizes youth. Henna dye is used to stain leather and horses hooves and manes. Some mummies have been found wrapped in henna-dyed cloth.

The active dye ingredient in henna is hennotannic acid, or lawsone. Henna powder is available commercially; the quality depends on where the plant was grown and what part of the plant was used to make the dye. Sometimes henna is mixed with other plant dyes, such as indigo or coffee, to obtain other hues. The henna plant also produces an aromatic oil used as perfume. Henna is now grown commercially in Morocco, China, and Australia.

See also Dyes and pigments.

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Henna

Henna

Henna, species Lawsonia intermis of the family Lythracea, is a perennial shrub that grows wild in northern Africa and southern Asia . The name henna, which comes from the Arabic word al kenna, refers to both the plant and the dye that comes from the leaves. The henna plant has narrow, grayish green leaves and small, sweet smelling clustered flowers that are white, yellow, or rose in color .

One of the oldest known hair dyes, henna is still used worldwide. The leaves are dried, pulverized, mixed with hot water , and then made into a paste. The paste is applied to the hair, and later rinsed out, leaving a reddish tint. Women in Muslim countries use henna to color their nails, hands, feet, and cheeks. In India, some brides use henna to stain a beautifully intricate design on their hands. The Berbers of North Africa believe henna represents blood and fire, and that it links humankind to nature. Henna is used in Berber marriage ceremonies because it is thought that henna has special seductive powers and that it symbolizes youth. Henna dye is used to stain leather and horses' hooves and manes. Some mummies have been found wrapped in henna-dyed cloth.

The active dye ingredient in henna is hennotannic acid, or lawsone. Henna powder is available commercially; the quality depends on where the plant was grown and what part of the plant was used to make the dye. Sometimes henna is mixed with other plant dyes, such as indigo or coffee, to obtain other hues. The henna plant also produces an aromatic oil used as perfume. Henna is now grown commercially in Morocco, China, and Australia .

See also Dyes and pigments.

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