Derivation of the botanical name:
Withania for withanine, the main constituents of this plant.
somnifera, somnifer, sleep bringing ; meaning sleep inducing The name ashwagandha (one of the common names for this herb) comes from the sanskrit meaning "horse-like-smell". Apparently, this name not only refers to the smell of the herb but also its strengthening and aphrodisiac qualities. It is sometimes called “Indian Ginseng”.