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Webster 1913 Edition


Oak

Oak

(ōk)
,
Noun.
[OE.
oke
,
ok
,
ak
, AS.
āc
; akin to D.
eik
, G.
eiche
, OHG.
eih
, Icel.
eik
, Sw.
ek
, Dan.
eeg
.]
1.
(Bot.)
Any tree or shrub of the genus
Quercus
. The oaks have alternate leaves, often variously lobed, and staminate flowers in catkins. The fruit is a smooth nut, called an
acorn
, which is more or less inclosed in a scaly involucre called the cup or cupule. There are now recognized about three hundred species, of which nearly fifty occur in the United States, the rest in Europe, Asia, and the other parts of North America, a very few barely reaching the northern parts of South America and Africa. Many of the oaks form forest trees of grand proportions and live many centuries. The wood is usually hard and tough, and provided with conspicuous medullary rays, forming the silver grain.
2.
The strong wood or timber of the oak.
☞ Among the true oaks in America are:
Barren oak
, or
Black-jack
,
Quercus nigra
. –
Basket oak
,
Quercus Michauxii
. –
Black oak
,
Quercus tinctoria
; – called also
yellow oak
or
quercitron oak
. –
Bur oak
(see under
Bur
.),
Quercus macrocarpa
; – called also
over-cup
or
mossy-cup oak
. –
Chestnut oak
,
Quercus Prinus
and
Quercus densiflora
. –
Chinquapin oak
(see under
Chinquapin
),
Quercus prinoides
. –
Coast live oak
,
Quercus agrifolia
, of California; – also called
enceno
. –
Live oak
(see under
Live
),
Quercus virens
, the best of all for shipbuilding; also,
Quercus Chrysolepis
, of California. –
Pin oak
. Same as
Swamp oak
. –
Post oak
,
Quercus obtusifolia
. –
Red oak
,
Quercus rubra
. –
Scarlet oak
,
Quercus coccinea
. –
Scrub oak
,
Quercus ilicifolia
,
Quercus undulata
, etc. –
Shingle oak
,
Quercus imbricaria
. –
Spanish oak
,
Quercus falcata
. –
Swamp Spanish oak
, or
Pin oak
,
Quercus palustris
. –
Swamp white oak
,
Quercus bicolor
. –
Water oak
,
Quercus aquatica
. –
Water white oak
,
Quercus lyrata
. –
Willow oak
,
Quercus Phellos
.
Among the true oaks in Europe are:
Bitter oak
, or
Turkey oak
,
Quercus Cerris
(see
Cerris
). –
Cork oak
,
Quercus Suber
. –
English white oak
,
Quercus Robur
. –
Evergreen oak
,
Holly oak
, or
Holm oak
,
Quercus Ilex
. –
Kermes oak
,
Quercus coccifera
. –
Nutgall oak
,
Quercus infectoria
.
☞ Among plants called
oak
, but not of the genus
Quercus
, are:
African oak
,
a valuable timber tree (
Oldfieldia Africana
).
Australian oak
or
She oak
,
any tree of the genus
Casuarina
(see
Casuarina
).
Indian oak
,
the teak tree (see
Teak
).
Jerusalem oak
.
See under
Jerusalem
.
New Zealand oak
,
a sapindaceous tree (
Alectryon excelsum
).
Poison oak
,
a shrub once not distinguished from poison ivy, but now restricted to
Rhus toxicodendron
or
Rhus diversiloba
.
Silky oak
or
Silk-bark oak
,
an Australian tree (
Grevillea robusta
).
Green oak
,
oak wood colored green by the growth of the mycelium of certain fungi.
Oak apple
,
a large, smooth, round gall produced on the leaves of the American red oak by a gallfly (
Cynips confluens
). It is green and pulpy when young.
Oak beauty
(Zool.)
,
a British geometrid moth (
Biston prodromaria
) whose larva feeds on the oak.
Oak gall
,
a gall found on the oak. See 2d
Gall
.
Oak leather
(Bot.)
,
the mycelium of a fungus which forms leatherlike patches in the fissures of oak wood.
Oak pruner
.
(Zool.)
See
Pruner
, the insect.
Oak spangle
,
a kind of gall produced on the oak by the insect
Diplolepis lenticularis
.
Oak wart
,
a wartlike gall on the twigs of an oak.
The Oaks
,
one of the three great annual English horse races (the Derby and St. Leger being the others). It was instituted in 1779 by the
Earl of Derby
, and so called from his estate.
To sport one’s oak
,
to be “not at home to visitors,” signified by closing the outer (oaken) door of one's rooms.
[Cant, Eng. Univ.]

Webster 1828 Edition


Oak

OAK

,
Noun.
[It is probably that the first syllable, oak, was originally an adjective expressing some quality, as hard or strong, and by the disuse of tree, oak became the name of the tree.]
A tree of the genus Quercus, or rather the popular name of the genus itself, of which there are several species. The white oak grows to a great size, and furnishes a most valuable timber; but the live oak of the United States is the most durable timber for ships. In Hartford still stands the venerable oak, in the hollow stem of which was concealed and preserved the colonial charter of Connecticut, when Sir E. Andros, by authority of a writ of quo warranto from the British crown, attempted to obtain possession of it, in 1687. As it was then a large tree, it must now be nearly three hundred years old.

Definition 2022


oak

oak

See also: OAK and o'ak

English

white oak leaves and acorns (1)

Noun

oak (countable and uncountable, plural oaks)

  1. (countable) A deciduous tree with distinctive deeply lobed leaves, acorns, and notably strong wood, typically of England and northeastern North America, included in genus Quercus.
    • 1879, Richard Jefferies, The Amateur Poacher, chapter1:
      It was not far from the house; but the ground sank into a depression there, and the ridge of it behind shut out everything except just the roof of the tallest hayrick. As one sat on the sward behind the elm, with the back turned on the rick and nothing in front but the tall elms and the oaks in the other hedge, it was quite easy to fancy it the verge of the prairie with the backwoods close by.
    • 1912, Zane Grey, Riders of the Purple Sage, Chapter 8
      Instead there were the white of aspens, streaks of branch and slender trunk glistening from the green of leaves, and the darker green of oaks, and through the middle of this forest, from wall to wall, ran a winding line of brilliant green which marked the course of cottonwoods and willows.
  2. (uncountable) The wood of the oak.
  3. A rich brown colour, like that of oak wood.
    oak colour:    
  4. Any tree of the genus Quercus, in family Fagaceae.
  5. Any tree of other genera and species of trees resembling typical oaks of genus Quercus in some ways.
    1. The she-oaks in Allocasuarina and Casuarina, of family Casuarinaceae
    2. Lagunaria, white oak, in family Malvaceae
    3. Various species called silky oak, in family Proteaceae
    4. Toxicodendron, poison oak, in family Anacardiaceae
    5. Various tanbark oak or stone oak species in family Fagaceae, genera Lithocarpus and Notholithocarpus.

Derived terms

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Hypernyms

Meronyms

Adjective

oak (not comparable)

  1. (colour) of a rich brown colour, like that of oak wood.
  2. made of oak wood or timber
    an oak table, oak beam, etc
  3. consisting of oak trees
    an oak wood, oak forest, etc

Synonyms

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See also

Anagrams