Uncertain. Often considered either a substratum term or derived from Albanian këlbazë. Another theory suggests the Albanian may instead be a borrowing from a local Romanian or Eastern Romance language (compare Aromanian gãlbadzã), and that the word derives ultimately from a Vulgar Latin clavella, through metathesis reaching a form *calvella, in turning giving early Romanian *călbea, to which the suffix -ză was later added (cf. this suffix in cinteză, pupăză, spetează, sfârlează). Compare French clavelée (“sheep pox, malady, disease affecting ovines”), claveau (“virus causing sheep pox”), Italian chiavello, chiavella, from a Latin *clavellus, from clavus. For the meaning referring to the plant, it may indicate its use as a form of traditional medicine in liver illnesses. 
- A disease of the liver affecting sheep (ovines) and bovines.
- The parasite responsible for the aforementioned disease.
- Any of several species of parasitic plants in the genus Cuscuta, notably dodder and hellweed (Cuscuta epithymum).