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Origanum majorana

Origanum majorana (*)

Classification System: APG IV

Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: Core eudicots
Cladus: Asterids
Cladus: Lamiids
Ordo: Lamiales

Familia: Lamiaceae
Subfamilia: Nepetoideae
Tribus: Mentheae
Subtribus: Menthinae
Genus: Origanum
Species: Origanum majorana

Origanum majorana L., Sp. Pl.: 590 (1753).

Majorana hortensis Moench, Methodus: 406 (1794).
Origanum odorum Salisb., Prodr. Stirp. Chap. Allerton: 85 (1796), nom. superfl.
Majorana vulgaris Gray, Nat. Arr. Brit. Pl. 2: 381 (1821 publ. 1822), nom. superfl.
Thymus majorana (L.) Kuntze, Taschen-Fl. Leipzig: 106 (1867).
Majorana majorana (L.) H.Karst., Ill. Repert. Pharm.-Med. Bot.: 999 (1886), nom. inval.
Amaracus majorana (L.) Schinz & Thell., Bull. Herb. Boissier, sér. 2, 7: 576 (1907).
Origanum majorana var. tenuifolium Weston, Bot. Univ. 3: 530 (1772).
Origanum majoranoides Willd., Sp. Pl., ed. 4, 3: 137 (1800).
Origanum majorana var. majoranoides (Willd.) Nyman, Consp. Fl. Eur.: 592 (1881), nom. superfl.
Origanum salvifolium Roth, Catal. Bot. 2: 48 (1800).
Majorana ovalifolia Stokes, Bot. Mat. Med. 3: 350 (1812).
Majorana ovatifolia Stokes, Bot. Mat. Med. 3: 351 (1812).
Majorana uncinata Stokes, Bot. Mat. Med. 3: 353 (1812).
Majorana tenuifolia Gray, Nat. Arr. Brit. Pl. 2: 381 (1821 publ. 1822).
Majorana fragrans Raf., Fl. Tellur. 3: 86 (1837).
Majorana suffruticosa Raf., Fl. Tellur. 3: 86 (1837).
Majorana tenuifolia Raf., Fl. Tellur. 3: 86 (1837).
Origanum confertum Pi.Savi, Index Seminum (PI, Ticinensis) 1839: [2] (1839).
Majorana mexicana M.Martens & Galeotti, Bull. Acad. Roy. Sci. Bruxelles 11(2): 191 (1844).
Majorana cretica var. hortorum Alef., Landw. Fl.: 119 (1866).
Origanum dubium Boiss., Fl. Orient. 4: 553 (1879).
Majorana dubia (Boiss.) Briq. in H.G.A.Engler & K.A.E.Prantl, Nat. Pflanzenfam. 4(3a): 307 (1896).
Origanum syriacum subsp. dubium (Boiss.) Holmboe, Stud. Veg. Cyprus: 162 (1914).

Native distribution areas:

Continental: Europe
Regional: Northern Europe
Great Britain.
Regional: Middle Europe
Czechoslovakia, Switzerland.
Regional: Southwestern Europe
Baleares, Corse, Spain.
Regional: Southeastern Europe
Greece, Italy, Yugoslavia.
Regional: Eastern Europe
Baltic States, Krym, Ukraine.
Continental: Africa
Regional: Northern Africa
Algeria, Libya, Morocco, Tunisia.
Regional: Macaronesia
Azores, Madeira.
Continental: Asia-Temperate
Regional: Western Asia
Cyprus, Turkey.
Continental: Asia-Tropical
Regional: Indian Subcontinent
Continental: Southern America
Regional: Northern South America
Regional: Southern South America
Juan Fernández Islands.
Note: Grey script indicates introduced occurrences.

References: Brummitt, R.K. 2001. TDWG – World Geographical Scheme for Recording Plant Distributions, 2nd Edition
Primary references

Linnaeus, C. 1753. Species Plantarum. Tomus II: 590. Reference page.


Govaerts, R. et al. 2020. Origanum majorana in World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2020 April 2. Reference page.
International Plant Names Index. 2020. Origanum majorana. Published online. Accessed: 2 April 2020.

Vernacular names
беларуская: Маяран
čeština: Majoránka zahradní
Deutsch: Majoran
English: Marjoram
español: Mejorana
eesti: Aedmajoraan, Vorstirohi
suomi: Maustemeirami, meirami
hrvatski: Mažuran
Mirandés: Majerona
português: Manjerona
русский: Майоран
svenska: Mejram
Türkçe: Mercanköşk
中文: 墨角蘭

Marjoram (/ˈmɑːrdʒərəm/;[2] Origanum majorana) is a cold-sensitive perennial herb or undershrub with sweet pine and citrus flavours. In some Middle Eastern countries, marjoram is synonymous with oregano, and there the names sweet marjoram and knotted marjoram are used to distinguish it from other plants of the genus Origanum. It is also called pot marjoram,[3] although this name is also used for other cultivated species of Origanum.


Marjoram is indigenous to Cyprus, Turkey, the Mediterranean, Western Asia, the Arabian Peninsula, and the Levant, and was known to the ancient Greeks and Romans as a symbol of happiness.[4] It may have spread to the British Isles during the Middle Ages.[5] Marjoram was not widely used in the United States until after World War II.[5]

The name marjoram (Old French: majorane; Medieval Latin: majorana) does not directly derive from the Latin word maior (major).[6]

Leaves are smooth, simple, petiolated, ovate to oblong-ovate, 0.5–1.5 cm (0.2–0.6 inches) long, 0.2–0.8 cm (0.1–0.3 inches) wide, with obtuse apex, entire margin, symmetrical but tapering base, and reticulate venation. The texture of the leaf is extremely smooth due to the presence of numerous hairs.[7]
Marjoram (Origanum majorana) essential oil

Considered a tender perennial (USDA Zones 7–9),[8] marjoram can sometimes prove hardy even in zone 5.

Marjoram is cultivated for its aromatic leaves, either green or dry, for culinary purposes; the tops are cut as the plants begin to flower and are dried slowly in the shade. It is often used in herb combinations such as herbes de Provence and za'atar. The flowering leaves and tops of marjoram are steam-distilled to produce an essential oil that is yellowish in color (darkening to brown as it ages). It has many chemical components, some of which are borneol, camphor, and pinene.
Related species

Oregano (Origanum vulgare), sometimes listed with marjoram as O. majorana, is also called wild marjoram. It is a perennial common in southern Europe and north to Sweden in dry copses and on hedge-banks, with many stout stems 30–80 centimetres (12–31 in) high, bearing short-stalked, somewhat ovate leaves and clusters of purple flowers. It has a stronger flavor than marjoram.

Pot marjoram or Cretan oregano (O. onites) has similar uses to marjoram.

Hardy marjoram or French/​Italian/​Sicilian marjoram (O. × majoricum), a cross of marjoram with oregano, is much more resistant to cold, but is slightly less sweet.[9]

O. × pulchellum is known as showy marjoram or showy oregano.

Marjoram is used for seasoning soups, stews, salad dressings, sauces, and herbal teas.[10]
See also

Origanum vulgare


"Origanum majorana". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Agricultural Research Service (ARS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Retrieved 2008-03-08.
Company, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing. "The American Heritage Dictionary entry: marjoram".
BSBI List 2007 (xls). Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland. Archived from the original (xls) on 2015-06-26. Retrieved 2014-10-17.
"Marjoram is the happiness herb". 2 July 2013. Retrieved 4 August 2021.
Sanderson, Helen; Renfrew, Jane M. (2005). Prance, Ghillean; Nesbitt, Mark (eds.). The Cultural History of Plants. Routledge. p. 111. ISBN 0415927463.
Marjoram, Online Etymology Dictionary, Douglas Harper, November 2001.
BP Pimple, AN Patel, PV Kadam, MJ Patil. Microscopic evaluation and physicochemical analysis of Origanum majorana Linn leaves. Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Disease 2, S897-S903.
"Learn 2 Grow: Origanum majorana".
"Origanum majoricum Cambess".
"Marjoram, Herb". Food Reference. Retrieved 28 February 2017.

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