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sharp-pointed projection on some plants, usually protective in function. Botanically, thorns are distinguished as modified stems (as in the honey locust and hawthorn) from spines, which are modified leaves (as in the barberry), and from prickles, which are epidermal outgrowths of the bark (as in the rose and blackberry). Cacti have both thorns and spines.


see ToruńToruń
, Ger. Thorn, city (1993 est. pop. 201,700), capital (with Bydgoszcz) of Kujawsko-Pomorskie prov., N central Poland, on the Vistula River. It is a river port and a railway junction.
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, Poland.
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What does it mean when you dream about a thorn?

Thorns are usually associated with suffering. The dreamer may be “sacrificing” his or her own life for others, thereby becoming a “martyr.”

The Dream Encyclopedia, Second Edition © 2009 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.


A short, sharp, rigid, leafless branch on a plant.
Any of various sharp spinose structures on an animal.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


the messenger of Satan. [N.T.: II Corinthians 12:7]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


1. a sharp pointed woody extension of a stem or leaf
a. any of various trees or shrubs having thorns, esp the hawthorn
b. the wood of any of these plants
3. a Germanic character of runic origin Þ used in Old and Modern Icelandic to represent the voiceless dental fricative sound of th, as in thin, bath. Its use in phonetics for the same purpose is now obsolete
4. this same character as used in Old and Middle English as an alternative to edh, but indistinguishable from it in function or sound
5. Zoology any of various sharp spiny parts
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
Like Catullus' flower, Totius' thorn bush, growing right next to the road, occupies a liminal space between the bush or the wilderness, on the one hand, and the road, the symbol of progress, communication and civilization, on the other.
"Cut the thorn bush down!" cried the ones standing around the leader.
"I started to run but eventually I realised there was no way I was going to outrun the elephant and tried to hide under a thorn bush.
At the altar of St Peter in Rome the dove drops a small scroll of parchment which reads: 'At Clent in a field of cows lies Kenelm, son of the king, under a thorn bush, bereft of his head.' (I translate roughly and not very successfully).
The poem "Seriously" makes the backward case that gods cannot exist without us, can only live and breathe and think with our hearts, lungs, and brains: "show me the eye / that does not rain, snow that does not return // to the mouth of the desert, a mouth of briers, / the pleading mouth of the thorn bush! / And what poet worth his salt believes that any god / '"might live, move, be'" without our being, // take a breath, breathe a single word without us ...
They tried to drown her, and shoved her in a thorn bush. It surprises me that children could be so mean and close-minded.
Tracking across Africa's thorn bush for endless miles on the spoor of elephant buffalo, and rhino.
SPIKED: Karlsson's tee shot is heading for a thorn bush but the ball was fished out by a marshal
"The taxi dropped me off, but then I suffered a fit on the communal path leading to my flat and I fell into a thorn bush," she said.
"They pushed me into a thorn bush and I had to spend some time picking thorns out of my skin and clothes.
This lemon-yellow and green warbler with orange bill landed on a sandy track, grabbed an insect and flashed back to the thorn bush.
I was completely hidden behind a thorn bush, but still he found me.