A genus of perennial herbs (Iris
) with swordlike leaves and large three-petaled flowers often of very gay colors, but probably white in the plant first chosen for the royal French emblem. [1913 Webster
" There are nearly one hundred species, natives of the north temperate zone. Some of the best known are Iris Germanica, I. Florentina, I. Persica, I. sambucina, and the American I. versicolor, I. prismatica, etc."