Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Primrose, a corruption of primerole, the abbreviation of the French primeverole, the Italian primaverola, a diminutive of prima vera, the "first spring flower," a name applied formerly to the privet but now referring to Primula vulgaris. This plant has a truncate or premorse rhizome; a rosette of wrinkled obovate leaves with netted venation prominent beneath; a very short peduncle with an involucre of linear bracts; long, pink-tinged, hairy pedicels; a, slightly inflated, five-angled tubular calyx; a spreading, salver-shaped, generally pale yellow corolla, with notched petals and an orange centre with thickened folds. This ordinary form with shortened peduncle is termed P. acaulis, that with it elongated, P. caulescens. The flowers exhibit dimorphic heterostyly (q.v.), giving rise to the variations popularly called "thrum-eye" and "pin-eye," and also vary greatly in colour, white and red being the chief exceptional tints. It is the origin of the garden .'Polyanthus (q.v.). Early blossoms often open at Christmas, or sooner.