Irish moss

noun

1
: the dried and bleached parts of a red alga (especially Chondrus crispus) used as an agent for thickening or emulsifying or as a demulcent and as a source of carrageenan
2
: a red alga that is a source of Irish moss

called also carrageen

Examples of Irish moss in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Sometimes called Irish moss, Irish sea moss, or by its scientific name, Chondrus crispus, sea moss is a frilly sea vegetable similar to other types of edible seaweed, such as nori, kelp, wakame, and kombu. Vogue, 8 Dec. 2023 In fact, some of the most popular plants known as moss are not actually mosses (Irish moss belongs to the carnation family; Spanish moss is a bromeliad). Jenny Comita, New York Times, 21 Nov. 2023 Newsletter Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news Sea moss, a type of red algae that is commonly referred to as Irish moss, has recently gained popularity in the health and wellness sphere. Jake Parks, Discover Magazine, 23 Oct. 2023 Often referred to as Irish moss or red seaweed, this plant was used for its medicinal properties in China starting around 600 BC and as a food source in the British Isles in 400 BC. Christina Manian, Rdn, Better Homes & Gardens, 24 July 2023 Some version of carrageenan, which comes from the seaweed Irish moss, has been used in cooking for centuries; Great-Grandmother certainly used the lecithin from egg yolks, if not from soy oil, to emulsify her sauces. Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, 24 July 2023 Organic sea moss, also known as Irish moss, is known for its high nutrient content which includes minerals such as iron, calcium, and magnesium. Amber Smith, Discover Magazine, 5 July 2023 Plus, the Irish moss ingredient is great for overall health and vitality, adds Guan. Andi Breitowich, Women's Health, 16 Apr. 2023 There are many different types of sea moss available on the market, including Irish moss, Atlantic Moss, and Jamaican moss. The Salt Lake Tribune, 18 Aug. 2022

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'Irish moss.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1837, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of Irish moss was in 1837

Dictionary Entries Near Irish moss

Cite this Entry

“Irish moss.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/Irish%20moss. Accessed 21 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

Irish moss

noun
: either of two red algae
also : these algae when dried and bleached for use especially as thickeners or soothing agents (as in food or lotions)

Medical Definition

Irish moss

noun
1
: the dried and bleached plants of a red alga (especially Chondrus crispus) that are used as an agent for thickening or emulsifying or as a demulcent (as in cookery or pharmacy)

called also chondrus

2
: a red alga (especially Chondrus crispus) that is a source of Irish moss

called also carrageen

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