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Webster 1913 Edition


Vegetable

Vegˊe-ta-ble

,
Adj.
[F.
végétable
growing, capable of growing, formerly also, as a noun, a vegetable, from L.
vegetabilis
enlivening, from
vegetare
to enliven, invigorate, quicken,
vegetus
enlivened, vigorous, active,
vegere
to quicken, arouse, to be lively, akin to
vigere
to be lively, to thrive,
vigil
watchful, awake, and probably to E.
wake
, v. See
Vigil
,
Wake
,
Verb.
]
1.
Of or pertaining to plants; having the nature of, or produced by, plants;
as, a
vegetable
nature;
vegetable
growths, juices, etc.
Blooming ambrosial fruit
Of
vegetable
gold.
Milton.
2.
Consisting of, or comprising, plants;
as, the
vegetable
kingdom
.
Vegetable alkali
(Chem.)
,
an alkaloid.
Vegetable brimstone
.
(Bot.)
See
Vegetable sulphur
, below.
Vegetable butter
(Bot.)
,
a name of several kinds of concrete vegetable oil; as that produced by the Indian butter tree, the African shea tree, and the
Pentadesma butyracea
, a tree of the order
Guttiferae
, also African. Still another kind is pressed from the seeds of cocoa (
Theobroma
).
Vegetable flannel
,
a textile material, manufactured in Germany from pine-needle wool, a down or fiber obtained from the leaves of the
Pinus sylvestris
.
Vegetable ivory
.
See
Ivory nut
, under
Ivory
.
Vegetable jelly
.
See
Pectin
.
Vegetable kingdom
.
(Nat. Hist.)
See the last Phrase, below.
Vegetable leather
.
(a)
(Bot.)
A shrubby West Indian spurge (
Euphorbia punicea
), with leathery foliage and crimson bracts.
(b)
See
Vegetable leather
, under
Leather
.
Vegetable marrow
(Bot.)
,
an egg-shaped gourd, commonly eight to ten inches long. It is noted for the very tender quality of its flesh, and is a favorite culinary vegetable in England. It has been said to be of Persian origin, but is now thought to have been derived from a form of the American pumpkin.
Vegetable oyster
(Bot.)
,
the oyster plant. See under
Oyster
.
Vegetable parchment
,
papyrine.
Vegetable sheep
(Bot.)
,
a white woolly plant (
Raoulia eximia
) of New Zealand, which grows in the form of large fleecy cushions on the mountains.
Vegetable silk
,
a cottonlike, fibrous material obtained from the coating of the seeds of a Brazilian tree (
Chorisia speciosa
). It is used for various purposes, as for stuffing cushions, and the like, but is incapable of being spun on account of a want of cohesion among the fibers.
Vegetable sponge
.
See 1st
Loof
.
Vegetable sulphur
,
the fine and highly inflammable spores of the club moss (
Lycopodium clavatum
); witch meal.
Vegetable tallow
,
a substance resembling tallow, obtained from various plants; as,
Chinese vegetable tallow
, obtained from the seeds of the tallow tree.
Indian vegetable tallow
is a name sometimes given to piney tallow.
Vegetable wax
,
a waxy excretion on the leaves or fruits of certain plants, as the bayberry.
Vegetable kingdom
(Nat. Hist.)
,
that primary division of living things which includes all plants. The classes of the vegetable kingdom have been grouped differently by various botanists. The following is one of the best of the many arrangements of the principal subdivisions.

I. (called also
Phanerogamia
).
Plants having distinct flowers and true seeds.
{ 1.
Dicotyledons
(called also
Exogens
). – Seeds with two or more cotyledons. Stems with the pith, woody fiber, and bark concentrically arranged. Divided into two subclasses:
Angiosperms
, having the woody fiber interspersed with dotted or annular ducts, and the seeds contained in a true ovary;
Gymnosperms
, having few or no ducts in the woody fiber, and the seeds naked. 2.
Monocotyledons
(called also
Endogens
). – Seeds with single cotyledon. Stems with slender bundles of woody fiber not concentrically arranged, and with no true bark.}II. .
Plants without true flowers, and reproduced by minute spores of various kinds, or by simple cell division.
{ 1.
Acrogens
. – Plants usually with distinct stems and leaves, existing in two alternate conditions, one of which is nonsexual and sporophoric, the other sexual and oophoric. Divided into
Vascular Acrogens
, or
Pteridophyta
, having the sporophoric plant conspicuous and consisting partly of vascular tissue, as in Ferns, Lycopods, and Equiseta, and
Cellular Acrogens
, or
Bryophyta
, having the sexual plant most conspicuous, but destitute of vascular tissue, as in Mosses and Scale Mosses. 2.
Thallogens
. – Plants without distinct stem and leaves, consisting of a simple or branched mass of cellular tissue, or reduced to a single cell. Reproduction effected variously. Divided into
Algae
, which contain chlorophyll or its equivalent, and which live upon air and water, and
Fungi
, which contain no chlorophyll, and live on organic matter. (Lichens are now believed to be fungi parasitic on included algae.}
☞ Many botanists divide the Phaenogamia primarily into Gymnosperms and Angiosperms, and the latter into Dicotyledons and Monocotyledons. Others consider Pteridophyta and Bryophyta to be separate classes. Thallogens are variously divided by different writers, and the places for diatoms, slime molds, and stoneworts are altogether uncertain.
For definitions, see these names in the Vocabulary.

Veg′e-ta-ble

,
Noun.
1.
(Biol.)
A plant. See
Plant
.
2.
A plant used or cultivated for food for man or domestic animals, as the cabbage, turnip, potato, bean, dandelion, etc.; also, the edible part of such a plant, as prepared for market or the table.
Vegetables and fruits are sometimes loosely distinguished by the usual need of cooking the former for the use of man, while the latter may be eaten raw; but the distinction often fails, as in the case of quinces, barberries, and other fruits, and lettuce, celery, and other vegetables. Tomatoes if cooked are vegetables, if eaten raw are fruits.

Webster 1828 Edition


Vegetable

VEG'ETABLE

,
Noun.
[L. vigeo, to grow.]
1.
A plant; an organized body destitute of sense and voluntary motion, deriving its nourishment through pores or vessels on its outer surface, in most instances adhering to some other body, as the earth, and in general, propagating itself by seeds. some vegetables have spontaneous motion, as the sunflower. Vegetables alone have the power of deriving nourishment from inorganic matter, or organic matter entirely decomposed.
2.
In a more limited sense, vegetables are such plants as are used for culinary purposes and cultivated in gardens, or are destined for feeding cattle and sheep. Vegetables for these uses are such as are of a more soft and fleshy substance than trees and shrubs; such as cabbage, cauliflower, turnips, potatoes, peas, beans, &c.

VEG'ETABLE

, a.
1.
Belonging to plants; as a vegetable nature; vegetable qualities; vegetable juices.
2.
Consisting of plants; as the vegetable kingdom.
3.
having the nature of plants; as a vegetable body.

Definition 2023


vegetable

vegetable

English

Noun

vegetable (plural vegetables)

  1. Any plant.
    • 1837, The Edinburgh New Philosophical Journal (volume 23, page 222)
      That he might ascertain whether any of the cloths of ancient Egypt were made of hemp, M. Dutrochet has examined with the microscope the weavable filaments of this last vegetable.
  2. A plant raised for some edible part of it, such as the leaves, roots, fruit or flowers, but excluding any plant considered to be a fruit, grain, or spice in the culinary sense.
  3. The edible part of such a plant.
  4. (figuratively, derogatory) A person whose brain (or, infrequently, body) has been damaged so that they cannot interact with the surrounding environment; a brain-dead person.

Synonyms

  • (derogatory term for a person with brain damage): cabbage

Translations

Adjective

vegetable (not comparable)

  1. Of or relating to plants.
  2. Of or relating to vegetables.

Translations

Related terms