1. Any of various deciduous trees of the genus Platanus, especially P. occidentalis of eastern North America, having palmately lobed leaves, ball-like, nodding, hairy fruit clusters, and bark that flakes off in large pieces. Also called buttonball, buttonwood.
2. A Eurasian deciduous maple tree (Acer pseudoplatanus) having palmately lobed leaves, winged fruits, and greenish flowers.
3. A fig tree (Ficus sycomorus) of Africa and adjacent southwest Asia, mentioned in the Bible, having clusters of figs borne on short leafless twigs.
[Middle English sicamour, a kind of fig tree, from Old French sicamor, from Latin sȳcomorus, from Greek sūkomoros, perhaps of Semitic origin; see qwm in the Appendix of Semitic roots.]
(click for a larger image)sycamore
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.