rhubarb
noun Etymology: Middle English rubarbe, from Anglo-French reubarbe, from Medieval Latin reubarbarum, alteration of rha barbarum, literally, barbarian rhubarb Date: 15th century 1. any of a genus (Rheum) of Asian plants of the buckwheat family having large leaves with thick succulent petioles often used as food; also the petioles of rhubarb 2. the dried rhizome and roots of any of several rhubarbs (as Rheum officinale and R. palmatum) grown in China and Tibet and used as a purgative and stomachic 3. a heated dispute or controversy

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Rhubarb — Rhu barb, n. [F. rhubarbe, OF. rubarbe, rheubarbe, reubarbare, reobarbe, LL. rheubarbarum for rheum barbarum, Gr. ??? (and ??) rhubarb, from the river Rha (the Volga) on whose banks it grew. Originally, therefore, it was the barbarian plant from… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • rhubarb — late 14c., from O.Fr. rubarbe, from M.L. rheubarbarum, from Gk. rha barbaron foreign rhubarb, from rha rhubarb (associated with Rha, ancient Scythian name of the River Volga) + barbaron, neut. of barbaros foreign. Grown in China and Tibet, it was …   Etymology dictionary

  • rhubarb — [ro͞o′bärb΄] n. [ME rubarbe < OFr rheubarbe < ML rheubarbarum, altered < LL rha barbarum < Gr rhēon barbaron, foreign rhubarb < rhēon, rhubarb (< Pers rēwend) + barbaron, foreign, BARBAROUS] 1. any of a genus (Rheum) of… …   English World dictionary

  • rhubarb — ► NOUN 1) the thick leaf stalks of a plant of the dock family, which are reddish or green and eaten as a fruit after cooking. 2) Brit. informal noise made by a group of actors to give the impression of indistinct background conversation. 3)… …   English terms dictionary

  • Rhubarb — For other uses, see Rhubarb (disambiguation). Rhubarb Scientific classification Kingdom: Plantae …   Wikipedia

  • rhubarb — /rooh bahrb/, n. 1. any of several plants belonging to the genus Rheum, of the buckwheat family, as R. officinale, having a medicinal rhizome, and R. rhabarbarum, having edible leafstalks. 2. the rhizome of any medicinal species of this plant,… …   Universalium

  • rhubarb — noun /ˈɹʊuˌbɑː(ɹ)b/ a) Any plant of the genus Rheum, especially R. rharbarbarum, having large leaves and long green or reddish acidic leafstalks, that are edible, in particular when cooked (although the leaves are mildly poisonous). Rhubarb is of …   Wiktionary

  • rhubarb — [14] The Greeks had two words for ‘rhubarb’: rhéon, which was borrowed from Persian rēwend, and which evolved into Latin rheum, now the plant’s scientific name; and rha, which is said to have come from Rha, an ancient name of the river Volga, in… …   The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins

  • rhubarb — [14] The Greeks had two words for ‘rhubarb’: rhéon, which was borrowed from Persian rēwend, and which evolved into Latin rheum, now the plant’s scientific name; and rha, which is said to have come from Rha, an ancient name of the river Volga, in… …   Word origins

  • rhubarb — n. (slang) argument 1) to get into a rhubarb 2) a rhubarb about * * * [ ruːbɑːb] (slang) [ argument ] to get into a rhubarb a rhubarb about …   Combinatory dictionary

  • rhubarb — noun 1》 a large leaved plant of the dock family which produces thick reddish or green leaf stalks. [Rheum rhaponticum and related species.]     ↘the cooked leaf stalks of the rhubarb plant, eaten as a dessert. 2》 Brit. informal noise made by a… …   English new terms dictionary

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