Ziziphus lotus (jujube) is a deciduous shrub in the buckthorn family Rhamnaceae, native to the Mediterranean region, including the Sahara in Morocco. The name of the plant in Cyprus is palloura (Greek:παλλούρα) or konnarka (Greek:κονναρκά) and it is described on page 47-48, volume 11 of Μεγάλη Κυπριακή Εγκυκλοπαίδεια (Great Cyprian Encyclopedia) (1990).
Ziziphus lotus can reach a height of 2–5 metres (6.6–16.4 ft), with shiny green leaves about 5 cm long. The edible fruit is a globose dark yellow drupe 1–1.5 cm diameter called a nabk. Common names in Arabic are sidr, rubeida ("after its crouch-shaped treetop"), nbeg in Tunisia and annab in Lebanon.
Cultural and religious references
In Arabic-speaking regions the Ziziphus lotus and alternatively the Jujube are closely associated with the Lote-trees (Sidr) which are mentioned in the Quran, while in Palestine it is rather the Ziziphus spina-christi that is called sidr.
- The Plant List: A Working List of All Plant Species, retrieved 30 January 2016
- Amots Dafni; Shay Levy; Efraim Lev (2005). "The ethnobotany of Christ's Thorn Jujube (Ziziphus spina-christi) in Israel". Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine 1 (8): 8. doi:10.1186/1746-4269-1-8. PMC 1277088. PMID 16270941. Retrieved 2010-06-05.
- Herodotus, Histories, Book IV, 177.
- Abdullah, Yusuf Ali (1946) The Holy Qur-an. Text, Translation and Commentary, Qatar National Printing Press.p.1139,n.3814
- Stephen Lambden. "The Sidrah (Lote-Tree) and the Sidrat al-Muntaha (Lote-Tree of the Extremity): Some Apects of their Islamic and Bābī-Bahā'ī Iintepretations.". Retrieved 9 December 2015.
This is apparently the wild jujube or zizyphus spina-christi (Christ's thorn), a tall, stout, tropical tree (see image above) with dense prickly branches which produces a sweet reddish fruit similar to that of the jujube (the `unnāb = zizyphus vulgaris / fruit)
- Easton, M.G., M.A., D.D. (1893). Illustrated Bible Dictionary and Treasury of Biblical History, Biography, Geography, Doctrine, and Literature. London, Edinburgh and New York: T. Nelson and Sons. p. 688.