from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A clear, jellylike preserve made from the pulp and rind of fruits, especially citrus fruits.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A preserve or confection of pulpy consistence made from various fruits, especially bitter and acid fruits, such as the orange, lemon, and barberry, and the berries of the mountain-ash, and sometimes also the larger fruits, like the apple, pear, plum, pineapple, quince, etc.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A preserve or confection made of the pulp of fruit, as the quince, pear, apple, orange, etc., boiled with sugar, and brought to a jamlike consistency.
  • noun (Bot.) a sapotaceous tree (Lucuma mammosa) of the West Indies and Tropical America. It has large obovate leaves and an egg-shaped fruit from three to five inches long, containing a pleasant-flavored pulp and a single large seed. The fruit is called marmalade, or natural marmalade, from its consistency and flavor.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Citrus fruit variant of jam but distinguished by being made slightly bitter by the addition of the peel and by partial caramelisation during manufacture. Most commonly made with Seville oranges, and usually qualified by the name of the fruit when made with other types of fruit.
  • verb transitive To spread marmalade on.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a preserve made of the pulp and rind of citrus fruits


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[French marmelade, from Portuguese marmelada, from marmelo, quince, alteration of Latin melimēlum, a kind of sweet apple, from Greek melimēlon : meli, honey; see melit- in Indo-European roots + mēlon, apple.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

French marmelade, from Portuguese marmelada ("quince jam"), from marmelo ("quince"), from Latin melimelum ("sweet apple"), from Ancient Greek μελίμηλον (melimēlon), from μέλι (meli, "honey") + μῆλον (mēlon, "apple").


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  • The psychotropic effects of marmalade aside, has anyone else ever come across the following story regarding the evolution of the word marmalade:

    Mary Queen of Scots had frequent headaches, for which the only relief was a special citrus conserve. When she was ill she would call for it. Having lived in exile in France she had French ladies in waiting, and so these sweet girls would flutter about the palace calling to each other: Maria malade! Maria malade! Which soon become Mar'malade…

    September 8, 2008

  • "It's a nice story, so it's really a shame that not a word of it is true. Marmalade takes its name from the Portugese word marmelada, meaning quince jam. The English were, in fact, eating marmalade, and calling it that, as early as 1524, eighteen years before Mary, Queen of Scots, was even born."

    - Evan Morris on, 3 June 2000.

    September 8, 2008

  • Since that 2000 comment the earliest find in English has been pushed back to 1480 (spelt marmelate), and which is incidentally earlier than the first known occurrence of the Portuguese marmelada it must come from. This is from marmelo "quince", from one or another Latin word that's ultimately a compound of Greek mêlon "apple" and méli "honey".

    September 8, 2008

  • ... and there was me thinking it's a cure for seasickness - mal de mer

    September 8, 2008