(Greek mythology) the daughter of Zeus and Leda, considered to be the most beautiful woman in the world; her abduction by Paris brought about the Trojan War.
* 1602 William Shakespeare, Troilus and Cressida , Act I, Scene I
- Fools on both sides! Helen must needs be fair,
* 1928 , The Mystery of the Blue Train
- When with your blood you daily paint her thus.
- "Is her name Ellen or Helen , Miss Viner? I thought - "
- Miss Viner closed her eyes.
* 1993 , The Fourteen Sisters of Emilio Montez O'Brien , ISBN 0-14-023028-9, page 6:
- "I can sound my h's, dear, as well as anyone, but Helen is not a suitable name for a servant. I don't know what the mothers in the lower classes are coming to nowadays."
* 2003 , A Share in Death'', HarperCollins, ISBN 0060534389, page 189
- - - - in 1910 she brought Helen' into the world, the little female, or "''mujercita''", as her mother called all the babies, naming her after the glittery label on a facial ointment, The ' Helen of Troy Beauty Pomade, said to eradicate wrinkles, to soften and add a youthful glow to the user's skin - a fortuitous choice because, of all the sisters, she would be the most beautiful and, never growing old, would always possess the face of a winsome adolescent beauty.
- Gemma followed her, thinking that Helen seemed rather an old-fashioned and elegant name for this rumpled young mother.
(See Usage notes)
(lb) A plant of the genus Iris , common in the northern hemisphere, and generally having attractive blooms ().
*:Breezes blowing from beds of iris quickened her breath with their perfume; she saw the tufted lilacs sway in the wind, and the streamers of mauve-tinted wistaria swinging, all a-glisten with golden bees; she saw a crimson cardinal winging through the foliage, and amorous tanagers flashing like scarlet flames athwart the pines.
(lb) The contractile membrane perforated by the pupil, which adjusts to control the amount of light reaching the retina, and which forms the colored portion of the eye ().
A diaphragm used to regulate the size of a hole, especially as a way of controlling the amount of light reaching a lens.
(lb) A rainbow, or other colourful refraction of light.
(lb) A constricted opening in the path inside a waveguide, used to form a resonator.
For the part of the eye, the usual medical plural is irides.
For the flower both iris'' and ''irises are in common use.
* 1989, Ann Lovejoy, The Year in Bloom [http://books.google.com/books?ie=UTF-8&hl=en&id=B2WnTx8ZSXoC&pg=PA107&lpg=PA107&sig=kTR265orMNqHigdpkspkvz5gF8c]
*: Is there anything more spectacular than the bearded iris in their short season?
* 1996, Katherine Grace Endicott, Northern California Gardening [http://books.google.com/books?ie=UTF-8&hl=en&id=2Orl1AcbaT4C&pg=PA138&lpg=PA138&sig=sRNZY7Jc53QpEqCrkaHoFKHx7_g]
*: Tall bearded iris are in bloom now.
* 2004, Diana Beresford-Kroeger, A Garden for Life [http://print.google.com/print?id=0sPBOVSC2MUC&pg=PA84&lpg=PA84&sig=bEEefwPluRvCp36e6pF5AkExCKk]
*: The bulbous iris are important because their early flowers provide a food source for bees and early flying insects.
* 1843, The Penny Cyclopaedia of the Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge
*: In colour the irides are straw-yellow, the pupils black; forehead, nape, and back, very dark bluish-black; [...]
* 1989, Robert S Ridgely, The Birds of South America [http://books.google.com/books?ie=UTF-8&hl=en&id=tRBb15pk4w0C&pg=RA1-PA374&lpg=RA1-PA374&sig=PZFkFg4LIlBDqSgZ7Z7DnYYha6M]
*: As in the caciques, bills are sharply pointed and pale, while irides are usually pale blue.
* 2001, John V Forrester et al., The Eye [http://books.google.com/books?ie=UTF-8&hl=en&id=CTltcMRq8_QC&pg=PA121&lpg=PA121&sig=oUK2_xiWqgcZ-USI7UBo0HxuBy4]
*: Later in life brown irides are the result of heavily pigmented melanocytes within the stroma.
* 1987, Pamela Harper, Frederick McGourty, Perennials [http://books.google.com/books?ie=UTF-8&hl=en&id=Mi5_h7ryCi0C&pg=PA109&lpg=PA109&sig=8_7tj1vGAjqwhPowAsYKQyL0QE8]
*: Tall bearded irises are easy to grow but not always easy to grow well.
* 2000, Kevin C Voughn, Louisiana Iris [http://books.google.com/books?ie=UTF-8&hl=en&id=4-T1HH-X1_sC&pg=PA44&lpg=PA44&sig=D957MQkQUZqTgY7ex8mGf0R6Wa4]
*: Most iris lovers feel that Louisiana irises are now large enough.
* 2002, John E Bryan, Bulbs [http://books.google.com/books?ie=UTF-8&hl=en&id=v-h4dovkqxgC&pg=PA296&lpg=PA296&sig=Oj6ubuGG706mBqxu_tKlzU90Q-0]
*: All these irises are sold as dry, dormant bulbs in fall.
* Iris (proper name)