1. an American tree, Sassafras albidum, of the laurel family, having egg-shaped leaves and long clusters of greenish-yellow flowers.
2. the aromatic bark of its root, used medicinally and especially for flavoring beverages, confectionery, etc.

“Was a leaf thing too they gave em to chew on. Mint, I believe, or sassafras.”
Pg 188 (red cover) in “Beloved” by Toni Morrison

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