naboom, noun

Forms:
Also gnaarboom, naaboom.
Plurals:
nabooms, occasionally ‖nabome /ˈnɑːbʊəmə/.
Origin:
Afrikaans, Khoikhoi, NamaShow more Afrikaans, probably from a Khoikhoi word (perhaps related to Nama !na- /ǂna/ big, strong) + boom tree.
Any of several species of tree of the genus Euphorbia, especially E. tetragona and E. ingens. Also attributive. See also chandelier sense 3, and milk-bush sense (b) at milk sense 2.
1875 S.W. Dell in Cape Monthly Mag. XI. July 12To whom two nests I should have shown, In gnaarbooms green, to you unknown.
1913 C. Pettman Africanderisms 189Gnaarboom, (The first part of this word appears to be of Hottentot origin, having an initial click; the Kaffir name for the tree is um Hlonhlo.) Euphorbia tetragona.
1917 R. Marloth Dict. of Common Names of Plants 60Naaboom, Euphorbia tetragona, E. grandidens, etc. S.E. coast districts. In Tr[ansvaal] applied to E. Cooperi and E. ingens.
1939 S. Cloete Watch for Dawn 114These endless morgen of forest brightened by the light green of the spekboom, darkened by isolated nabooms.
1955 T.V. Bulpin Storm over Tvl 24Twenty-five miles from Nylstroom the road passed a small stream of clear water flowing through the wilderness. On its bank grew a number of Euphorbia Ingens, known colloquially as Nabome.
1958 R.E. Lighton Out of Strong 22The broad, hill-dotted valley where the spiny nabooms clustered.
1961 Palmer & Pitman Trees of S. Afr. 239All the tree Euphorbias described are commonly known as ‘naboom’. According to the authors of ‘The Succulent Euphorbieae’, ‘na’ is a corruption of a Hottentot word ‘gnap’ meaning strong or energetic, and emphasizes the vigorous habit of growth of the trees.
1968 L.G. Green Full Many Glorious Morning 24The natives..toiled by the light of candles made of naboom leaves.
1976 A.P. Brink Instant in Wind 56The gnarled, thorny shrubs were green from the moisture sucked up from very deep down..hedgehog euphorbia and naboom, aloes, kiepersol and karee.
1977 S. Afr. Panorama Jan. 21 (caption)The majestic naboom and picturesque aloes highlight this view.
Any of several species of tree of the genus Euphorbia, especially E. tetragona and E. ingens. Also attributive.
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18751977