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From Nahuatl tecamac.[1][2]

In the 19th century, some authorities questioned if tacamahac, tamarack, and hackmatack could be cognate to one another, perhaps all corruptions of one term, but such cognancy is unlikely.[3]


tacamahac (plural tacamahacs)

  1. A bitter balsamic resin or resinous exudation obtained from tropical American trees of the genus Elaphrium (Elaphrum tomentosum and Elaphrum tacamahaca), from East Indian trees of the genus Calophyllum, or from the balsam poplar.
  2. Any tree yielding tacamahac resin, especially, in North America, the balsam poplar or balm of Gilead (Populus balsamifera).



  1. ^ tacamahac” in Dictionary.com Unabridged, v1.0.1, Lexico Publishing Group, 2006.
  2. ^ Webster's Third New International Dictionary, Unabridged. Merriam-Webster, 2002. unabridged.merriam-webster.com ({{{1}}})
  3. ^ 1902, Journal of American Folklore, volume 15, page 260