bas·il (bāzəl, băzəl)
a. An aromatic annual herb (Ocimum basilicum) in the mint family, native to Asia and Africa and widely cultivated for its leaves. Also called sweet basil.
b. The leaves of this plant used as a seasoning.
2. Any of various plants in the genus Ocimum, native to warm regions, having aromatic foliage and terminal clusters of small, usually white flowers.
[Middle English, from Old French basile, from Medieval Latin basilicum, from Greek basilikon, from neuter of basilikos, royal; see BASILICA.]
(click for a larger image)basil
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