- Word History, Word Explorer
|part of speech:
||the colored circle around the pupil of the eye.
A person with blue eyes has blue irises.
||a plant that has leaves shaped like swords and large, showy flowers.
is an ancient Greek word. In ancient Greece, it was a word for a kind of lily and for the colored ring on the surface of the eye. In English, it still has these meanings. In Greek mythology, Iris was the name of a female messenger of the gods. She appeared to mortals as the rainbow. Our word iridescent
comes from the word "iris."