- In the popular sense, the bloom or blossom of a plant; the showy portion, usually of a different color, shape, and texture from the foliage.
- [Bot] That part of a plant destined to produce seed, and hence including one or both of the sexual organs; an organ or combination of the organs of reproduction, whether inclosed by a circle of foliar parts or not. A complete flower consists of two essential parts, the stamens and the pistil, and two floral envelopes, the corolla and callyx. In mosses the flowers consist of a few special leaves surrounding or subtending organs called archegonia. See Blossom, and Corolla.
- The fairest, freshest, and choicest part of anything; as, the flower of an army, or of a family; the state or time of freshness and bloom; as, the flower of life, that is, youth."The choice and flower of all things profitable the Psalms do more briefly contain." [Hooker.]"The flower of the chivalry of all Spain." [Southey.]"A simple maiden in her flower Is worth a hundred coats of arms." [Tennyson.]
- Grain pulverized; meal; flour.(Obs)"The flowers of grains, mixed with water, will make a sort of glue." [Arbuthnot.]
- pl.[Old Chem] A substance in the form of a powder, especially when condensed from sublimation; as, the flowers of sulphur.
- A figure of speech; an ornament of style.
- pl.[Print] Ornamental type used chiefly for borders around pages, cards, etc.
- pl.Menstrual discharges.
Note: ☞ If we examine a common flower, such for instance as a geranium, we shall find that it consists of: First, an outer envelope or calyx, sometimes tubular, sometimes consisting of separate leaves called sepals; secondly, an inner envelope or corolla, which is generally more or less colored, and which, like the calyx, is sometimes tubular, sometimes composed of separate leaves called petals; thirdly, one or more stamens, consisting of a stalk or filament and a head or anther, in which the pollen is produced; and fourthly, a pistil, which is situated in the center of the flower, and consists generally of three principal parts; one or more compartments at the base, each containing one or more seeds; the stalk or style; and the stigma, which in many familiar instances forms a small head, at the top of the style or ovary, and to which the pollen must find its way in order to fertilize the flower.
Etymology: OE. flour, OF. flour flur flor, F. fleur, fr. L. flos floris. Cf. Blossom Effloresce Floret Florid Florin Flour Flourish