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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Aloe \Al"oe\ ([a^]l"n[-o]), n.; pl. Aloes (-[=o]z). [L. alo["e], Gr. 'alo`h, aloe: cf. OF. aloe, F. alo[`e]s.]

  1. pl. The wood of the agalloch. [Obs.]

  2. (Bot.) A genus of succulent plants, some classed as trees, others as shrubs, but the greater number having the habit and appearance of evergreen herbaceous plants; from some of which are prepared articles for medicine and the arts. They are natives of warm countries.

  3. pl. (Med.) The inspissated juice of several species of aloe, used as a purgative. [Plural in form but syntactically singular.]

    American aloe, Century aloe, the agave. See Agave.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

Old English alewe "fragrant resin of an East Indian tree," a Biblical usage, from Latin aloe, from Greek aloe, translating Hebrew ahalim (plural, perhaps ultimately from a Dravidian language).\n

\nThe Greek word probably was chosen for resemblance of sound to the Hebrew, because the Greek and Latin words referred originally to a genus of plants with spiky flowers and bitter juice, used as a purgative drug, a sense which appeared in English late 14c. The word was then misapplied to the American agave plant in 1680s. The "true aloe" consequently is called aloe vera.


n. 1 (context in the plural English) The resins of the trees (taxlink Aquilaria agallocha species noshow=1) and (taxlink Aquilaria malaccensis species noshow=1), known for their fragrant aroma. 2 A plant of the genus ''Aloe''. 3 A strong, bitter drink made from the juice of such plants, used as a purgative.


n. succulent plants having rosettes of leaves usually with fiber like hemp and spikes of showy flowers; found chiefly in Africa


Aloe ( or ), also written Aloë, is a genus containing over 500 species of flowering succulent plants. The most widely known species is Aloe vera, or "true aloe", so called because, though probably extinct in the wild, it is cultivated as the standard source of so-called "aloe vera" for assorted pharmaceutical purposes. Other species, such as Aloe ferox, also are cultivated or harvested from the wild for similar applications.

The APG IV system (2016) places the genus in the family Asphodelaceae, subfamily Asphodeloideae. In the past, it has been assigned to the family Aloaceae (now included in the Asphodelaceae) or to a broadly circumscribed family Liliaceae (the lily family). The plant Agave americana, which is sometimes called "American aloe", belongs to the Asparagaceae, a different family.

The genus is native to tropical and southern Africa, Madagascar, Jordan, the Arabian Peninsula, and various islands in the Indian Ocean ( Mauritius, Réunion, Comoros, etc.). A few species have also become naturalized in other regions ( Mediterranean, India, Australia, North and South America, etc.).

Aloe (disambiguation)

Aloe may refer to:

  • Aloe, a genus of succulent plants, which includes several species:
    • Aloe arborescens
    • Aloe aristata
    • Aloe camperi
    • Aloe dichotoma
    • Aloe vera
    • Aloe wildii
  • Aloe Ridge Game Reserve, in Gauteng, South Africa
  • Agarwood, also known as "aloeswood", or "lign-aloes"

Usage examples of "aloe".

Candle trees, bottlebrush trees, aloe trees, bougainvillea, hibiscus, jacaranda, agapanthus and arrowroot, but my orchids are a fuck-up.

Bring out the cymbal and drum, set out full pots painted with aloes and sandal-paste: plant plantains, hang on them garlands of flowers, for the Kirtan place joyfully.

I took my niece for a sail in the bay, and after we had enjoyed one of those delicious evenings which I think can be found nowhere else-- sailing on a mirror silvered by the moon, over which float the odours of the jasmine, the orange-blossom, the pomegranates, the aloes, and all the scented flowers which grow along the coasts--we returned to our lodging, and I asked Annette what had become of Marcoline.

He had long since made a thorough examination of the nearby villa: a bright-green lawn, gravel on the walks, thuja trees, a statue spotted with purple blots of shadow, a vase from which long sharp leaves of aloe hung down, and an artist painting a landscape.

It was prepared from the aloe, called by the natives Maguey which grows wild over the tablelands of Mexico.

This substance combined with aloes and sometimes with scammony, constitutes the basis of the numerous varieties of large, cathartic pills found in the market.

Lignaloes or agallochum, to be distinguished from the medicinal aloes.

Farr noticed suddenly that she was far prettier than he had let himself observe, that she wore a perfume of indefinable sweetness: aloes, cardamon, limone.

There are no mountains or heights, so that it may safely be presumed that there are no metals, nor any valuable timbers, such as sandalwood, aloe or calumba, and in our judgment this is the dryest and barrenest region that could be found in the world.

Then we talked about the garden for a while and Doc pointed to an overgrown hedge of krans aloe which he had originally used as a windbreak and which was now beginning to intrude into the garden.

He says it is as if all the date palms of the desert bore their fruit together, and in all the dry places, where men and camels have died of thirst in bygone years, running springs burst forth, and as if the sand were covered with millions of golden flowers big as the flower of the aloe.

India ten quintals of the wood of aloes, a maid seven cubits in height, and a carpet softer than silk, the skin, as it was reported, of an extraordinary serpent.

Namaqualand daisies, the vines of Tsama melons, and aloes with stalk flowers of red and yellow.

The fragrances of salt and seaweed, coconut oil and aloe from the sunscreen lotions of beachcombers around them.

CHAPTER XXXVII THE FLOWERING OF THE ALOE This same day, returning through Kensington Gardens, from his preparations for departure, Hilary came suddenly on Bianca standing by the shores of the Round Pond.