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

  • n. A plant cultivated for an edible part, such as the root of the beet, the leaf of spinach, or the flower buds of broccoli or cauliflower.
  • n. The edible part of such a plant.
  • n. A member of the vegetable kingdom; a plant.
  • n. Offensive Slang One who is severely impaired mentally and physically, as by brain injury or disease.
  • n. One who is regarded as dull, passive, or unresponsive.
  • adj. Of, relating to, or derived from plants or a plant.
  • adj. Suggestive of or resembling a plant.
  • adj. Growing or multiplying like plants.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any plant.
  • n. 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.
  • n. The edible part of such a plant.
  • n. A person whose brain (or, infrequently, body) has been damaged so that they cannot interact with the surrounding environment; a brain-dead person.
  • adj. Of or relating to plants.
  • adj. Of or relating to vegetables.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to plants; having the nature of, or produced by, plants
  • adj. Consisting of, or comprising, plants.
  • n. A plant. See plant.
  • n. 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.
  • n. A person who has permanently lost consciousness, due to damage to the brain, but remains alive; sometimes continued life requires support by machinery such as breathing tubes. Such a person is said to be in a vegetative state.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Having life such as a plant has.
  • Of or pertaining to plants; characteristic of plants; also, having the characteristics of a plant or of plants; resembling a plant or what belongs to plants; occupied or concerned with plants.
  • An alkaloid.
  • n. A plant. See plant.
  • n. In a more limited sense, a herbaceous plant used wholly or in part for culinary purposes, or for feeding cattle, sheep, or other animals, as cabbage, cauliflower, turnips, potatoes, spinach, peas, and beans. The whole plant may be so used, or its tops or leaves, or its roots, tubers, etc., or its fruit or seed.

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

  • n. edible seeds or roots or stems or leaves or bulbs or tubers or nonsweet fruits of any of numerous herbaceous plant
  • n. any of various herbaceous plants cultivated for an edible part such as the fruit or the root of the beet or the leaf of spinach or the seeds of bean plants or the flower buds of broccoli or cauliflower


From Middle English, living and growing as plants do, from Old French, from Medieval Latin vegetābilis, from Late Latin, enlivening, from Latin vegetāre, to enliven, from vegetus, lively, from vegēre, to be lively.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
(1350-1400) Middle English (adj.), from Latin vegetabilis ("able to live and grow"), derived from Latin vegetare ("to enliven") (Wiktionary)



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