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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Bistort \Bis"tort\, n. [L. bis + tortus, p. p. of torquere to twist: cf. F. bistorte.] (Bot.) An herbaceous plant of the genus Polygonum, section Bistorta; snakeweed; adderwort. Its root is used in medicine as an astringent.


n. Any of several perennial herbs, classified in genera (taxlink Bistorta genus noshow=1), ''Persicaria'', or ''Polygonum'', having spikes of pink flowers.


Bistort is a common name for several plants and may refer to:

  • Bistorta, a genus recognized by some sources including the species:
    • Bistorta bistortoides, native to North America
    • Bistorta officinalis ( Persicaria bistorta), native to Europe

Usage examples of "bistort".

Dandelion, Gentian and Valerian for some reason have survived and the Homeopaths use many more, but such useful plants as Agrimony, Slippery Elm, Horehound, Bistort, Poplar, Bur Marigold, Wood Betony, Wood Sanicle, Wild Carrot, Raspberry leaves, and the Sarsaparillas are now only used by Herbalists.

They ate roast pig garnished with bistort and nettle tops, flat loaves of barley bread, stewed hedgehog, and greens, and drank enough ale to fill two rivers while Weiwara told the story of how the ancient queen Toothless built the tumulus with magic.

Another Polygonum, the great Bistort, or Snakeweed, and Adderswort, is a common wild plant in the northern parts of Great Britain, having bent or crooked roots, which are difficult to be extirpated, and are strongly astringent.

A compound powder of the root (made of equal quantities of Bistort, Pellitory of Spain and burnt Allum made into a paste with a little honey and put in hollow of a tooth or at the side, eases their pain and stops the defluxion of rheum on the part cleanses the head and brain and causes evacuation of abundance of rheumatic matter.