elandsboontjie, noun

Forms:
Formerly also elands bontje, elands boontje.
Origin:
Afrikaans, South African DutchShow more Afrikaans (earlier South African Dutch elandsboontje), eland see eland + linking phoneme -s- + boontjie bean; see quotation 1966.
The plant Elephantorrhiza elephantinea of the Fabaceae, having seeds which are used as a coffee substitute, roots as a source of dye, and underground stems as food for stock.
1868 W.H. Harvey Genera of S. Afr. Plants 92Glabrous undershrubs, with large fleshy roots (Elandsboontjes).
1905 Green Richard Hartley, Prospector 229 (Pettman)‘Have you seen any Elandsboontje?’ Hartley went on, well knowing that the plant was very rare in that region.
1906 B. Stoneman Plants & their Ways 225Elephantorhiza (Eland’s bontjes) is a small glabrous shrub with very large roots.
1916 Farmer’s Weekly 20 Dec. 1504Would any reader kindly let me know...How to prepare the ‘Elandsboontjie’ for tanning purposes?
1917 R. Marloth Dict. of Common Names of Plants 25Elands boontje, Elephantorrhiza Burchellii. The popular name refers to the large size of the pods. A small deciduous perennial, the annual shoots a foot or two high, but the stout rootstock very big, weighing up to 10 pounds. This contains much tannin, hence its other name Looier’s bossie.
1966 C.A. Smith Common Names 209Elandsboontjie, The plants have a thick, underground, rootlike stem...Burchell reported that the underground stems were a favourite food of elephants. The pods are eaten by the eland antelope.
The plant Elephantorrhiza elephantinea of the Fabaceae, having seeds which are used as a coffee substitute, roots as a source of dye, and underground stems as food for stock.

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18681966