Irides (or irises, if you want people to know what you're talking about): they're the coloured circles round the pupils of your eyes; a sort of quartz; a rainbow (though, again, hardly anyone will have a clue what you mean if you use iris to mean rainbow); and a flower.
I've been reading about the flowers, and I'm drunk on glorious words: standards, falls, horns, spoons, flounces, luminata...
Luminata is such a rare word that it doesn't even make it into my copy of the Oxford English Dictionary. A luminata (actually, just one is probably a lumina, I should imagine, though I can't find anyone to tell me for sure) is a petal where the veins are a lighter colour than the background. Or so I understand.
Oh, and the best American iris each year is awarded the Dykes Medal.
Well, you never know, one day that might prove a vital piece of information.
Spot the frippet: iris. Iris is a Greek goddess who acts as a messenger from the gods to men. She gets to earth by sliding down a rainbow.
I think she just might have the best job ever.
Iris is a Greek word which means rainbow.