- See under linden(def 1).
- any tree of the genus Tilia, as T. americana (American linden) or T. europaea (European linden), having fragrant yellowish-white flowers and heart-shaped leaves, grown as an ornamental or shade tree.Compare linden family.
- the soft, light, white wood of any of these trees, used for making furniture and in the construction of houses, boxes, etc.
- any of various tiliaceous deciduous trees of the N temperate genus Tilia, having heart-shaped leaves and small fragrant yellowish flowers: cultivated for timber and as shade treesSee also lime 3, basswood
“the lime tree,” 1570s, noun use of an adjective, “of linden wood,” from Old English lind “linden” (n.), from Proto-Germanic *lindjo (cf. Old Saxon linda, Old Norse lind, Old High German linta, German linde), probably from PIE *lent-o- “flexible” (see lithe); with reference to the tree’s pliant bast. Cf. Russian lutĭijó “forest of lime trees,” Polish łét “switch, twig,” Lithuanian lenta “board, plank.”