cereal

adjective
ce·re·al | \ˈsir-ē-əl \

Definition of cereal 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: relating to grain or to the plants that produce it also : made of grain

cereal

noun

Definition of cereal (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a plant (such as a grass) yielding starchy grain suitable for food also : its grain

2 : a prepared foodstuff of grain (such as oatmeal or cornflakes)

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Cereal Has Roots in Roman Myth

The Roman goddess Ceres, the equivalent of the Greek Demeter, was a calm goddess who didn't take part in the quarrels of the other gods. Her particular responsibility was the food-giving plants, and for that reason the food grains came to carry her name. Cereals of the ancient Romans included wheat, barley, spelt, oats, and millet—but not corn (maize), which was a cereal of the Americas.

Examples of cereal in a Sentence

Noun

Wheat and barley are common cereals. Some kinds of cereal have a lot of added sugar. Some cereals have a lot of added sugar.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Cereal grains like oatmeal, whole fruits, and beans are all good sources of soluble fiber. Dr. Manny Alvarez, Fox News, "Could this be the next great weight loss secret?," 23 May 2017 Cereal growers must meet stringent quality criteria according to the end-use of their crop: for pasta production durum wheat must have a protein content of 14%. National Geographic, "Pasta Potential: Why the World Needs Better Wheat," 24 Feb. 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Just like having sugary cereal for breakfast can leave you hangry by 10 am, putting on the wrong face lotion can set you up for a day of beauty bummers. Jessica Cruel, SELF, "The 13 Best Face Moisturizers, Serums, and Masks for Every Type of Skin," 14 May 2018 Though fans of the cold beverage can choose from a variety of flavors, including piña colada, blue raspberry and wild cherry, for their free drink, this year’s featured flavor is a frozen twist on a classic cereal: Cap’n Crunch’s Crunch Berries. Ana Calderone, PEOPLE.com, "7-Eleven Is Giving Out Free Slurpees on Wednesday—Plus More Freebies All Week Long," 10 July 2018 Each of the cupcakes is based on a classic breakfast cereal, and each of them will be offered on the menu for only one week. Adam Lukach, RedEye Chicago, "Sprinkles Cupcakes breaks out 'breakfast cupcakes' during month of January," 16 Jan. 2018 Horwitz recommends eating fatty fish every other day; vegetarians can sprinkle walnuts or flaxseed on cereal. Kim Tranell, Redbook, "Eat These Foods to Fight Allergies," 25 Feb. 2013 The cereal has been the subject of a recall since last month and has sickened 100 people. James Hohmann, Washington Post, "The Daily 202: GOP candidates caught in a bind on Medicaid," 13 July 2018 This week's eating recommendation is the cereal and milk at Betty Rae's, and the reading recommendation is Andrew Helms and Matt Pent on how the USMNT missed the World Cup. Sam Mellinger, kansascity, "Mellinger Minutes: Danny Duffy good again, Royals and 100 losses, and, oh yes, the Chiefs," 12 June 2018 The food: The Fruity Pebbles concoction had some terrifically smooth ice cream that maintained the cereal's crispiness, while the marshmallow creme gave it a sort of fruity Rice Krispie Treat flavor. Robert Philpot, star-telegram, "Creamistry is here to fog up the Fort Worth ice-cream scene | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 18 May 2018 Sorghum, a cereal used mostly for livestock feed and ethanol output, isn't a primary crop on American farms. Bloomberg, latimes.com, "Sorghum, targeted by tariffs, is a U.S. crop China started buying only five years ago," 18 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cereal.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cereal

Adjective

1818, in the meaning defined above

Noun

1832, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cereal

Adjective

borrowed from French & Latin; French céréale, borrowed from Latin Ceriālis, Cereālis "of the goddess Ceres, of wheat or bread," from Cerer-, Cerēs ceres + -ālis -al entry 1

Note: The derivation of Ceriālis, Cereālis is unclear, as formation directly from the noun does not look possible. M. Leumann (Lateinische Laut- und Formenlehre, Munich, 1977, p. 180) suggests as the base an earlier *Cerrius, from *Cerzios, syncopated from a possessive adjective *Cerez-ios. A putative *Cerriālis would have been re-formed to Ceriālis, then Cereālis, after Cerēs.

Noun

derivative of cereal entry 1

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Dictionary Entries near cereal

cercus

-cercy

cere

cereal

cerealian

cerealist

cereal leaf beetle

Statistics for cereal

Last Updated

21 Aug 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cereal

The first known use of cereal was in 1818

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More Definitions for cereal

cereal

noun

English Language Learners Definition of cereal

: a plant (such as a grass) that produces grain that can be eaten

: a breakfast food made from grain

cereal

noun
ce·re·al | \ˈsir-ē-əl \

Kids Definition of cereal

1 : a plant (as a grass) that produces grain for food

2 : a food prepared from grain breakfast cereals

cereal

adjective
ce·re·al | \ˈsir-ē-əl \

Medical Definition of cereal 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: relating to grain or to the plants that produce it also : made of grain

cereal

noun

Medical Definition of cereal (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a plant (as a grass) yielding farinaceous grain suitable for food also : its grain

2 : a prepared foodstuff of grain

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Comments on cereal

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