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

  • n. Any of various climbing palms of the genera Calamus, Daemonorops, or Plectomia of tropical Asia, having long, tough, slender stems.
  • n. The stems of any of these palms, used to make wickerwork, canes, and furniture.
  • n. Work made of the stems of these palms.
  • n. A switch or cane made from these palms.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any of several species of climbing palm of the genus Calamus.
  • n. The plant used as a material.
  • n. A cane made from this material.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. One of the long slender flexible stems of several species of palms of the genus Calamus, mostly East Indian, though some are African and Australian. They are exceedingly tough, and are used for walking sticks, wickerwork, chairs and seats of chairs, cords and cordage, and many other purposes.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • See ratan.
  • n. See ratten.
  • n. The continuous beat or reverberation of a drum; rataplan; rat-a-tat.

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

  • n. the stem of various climbing palms of the genus Calamus and related genera used to make wickerwork and furniture and canes
  • n. climbing palm of Sri Lanka and southern India remarkable for the great length of the stems which are used for malacca canes
  • n. a switch made from the stems of the rattan palms


Malay rōtan (perhaps from raut, to pare or trim for use).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Malay rotan. (Wiktionary)



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