periwinkle

A periwinkle is a tiny snail that lives in the Atlantic Ocean. Some east coast beaches are covered with small stones, shells, and periwinkles. It’s also a color, a purplish-blue, just like the flowers on a periwinkle plant.

You might see periwinkles as you walk along the sea shore, and you may even see them on some restaurant menus, especially in coastal areas of the UK, where they're commonly called winkles. Another kind of periwinkle is the blue-flowered plant also called vinca, as well as the shade of purplish blue that was named for the flowers. Periwinkle is fun to say.

Definitions of periwinkle
  1. noun
    small edible marine snail; steamed in wine or baked
    synonyms: winkle
    see moresee less
    type of:
    seafood
    edible fish (broadly including freshwater fish) or shellfish or roe etc
  2. noun
    edible marine gastropod
    synonyms: winkle
    see moresee less
    type of:
    seasnail
    any of several creeping marine gastropods with a spirally coiled shell: whelks; tritons; moon shells; neritids
  3. noun
    commonly cultivated Old World woody herb having large pinkish to red flowers
    synonyms: Cape periwinkle, Catharanthus roseus, Madagascar periwinkle, Vinca rosea, cayenne jasmine, old maid, red periwinkle, rose periwinkle
    see moresee less
    type of:
    herb, herbaceous plant
    a plant lacking a permanent woody stem; many are flowering garden plants or potherbs; some having medicinal properties; some are pests
  4. noun
    chiefly trailing poisonous plants with blue flowers
    see moresee less
    types:
    Vinca minor, myrtle
    widely cultivated as a groundcover for its dark green shiny leaves and usually blue-violet flowers
    Vinca major, large periwinkle
    plant having variegated foliage and used for window boxes
    type of:
    subshrub, suffrutex
    low-growing woody shrub or perennial with woody base
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