aloes (ălˈōz) [key], drug obtained from the aloe; also a biblical name for an aromatic substance of various uses, mentioned in connection with myrrh and spices and thought to be the fragrant wood of the modern aloeswood (also called eaglewood, agalloch, or agilawood), an Aquilaria native to Asia. In the East the aloeswood has been valued for medicinal purposes, as an incense, and for the beautiful grain of its wood, which takes a high polish and was used for setting precious stones. The tree lignaloes mentioned in the Book of Numbers, sometimes thought to be the aloeswood, may have been a different plant. The aloe and the American aloe, or agave (see amaryllis), are not to be confused with the aloes of the Scriptures.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

More on aloes from Fact Monster:

  • aloe - aloe aloe [Gr.], any species of the genus Aloe, succulent perennials of the family Lilaceae (lily ...
  • agilawood - agilawood: agilawood: see aloes.
  • agalloch - agalloch agalloch : see aloes.
  • lily: Economic Importance - Economic Importance Because of the showy blossoms characteristic of the family, many species are ...
  • Giacomo Cavedone - Cavedone, Giacomo Cavedone, Giacomo , 1577–1660, Italian painter, of the Bolognese school. He ...

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Plants

Play Hangman

Play Poptropica

Play Quizzes

Play Tic Tac Toe