Definition of cress
: any of various crucifers with moderately pungent leaves used especially in salads: such asa : a watercress (Nasturtium officinale)b : garden cress
Recent Examples of cress from the Web
Presently the scientists are studying Arabidopsis thaliana, or mouse-ear cress, a small flowering plant in the mustard family that could be turned into a sentinel plant.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cress'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of cress
Middle English cresse, from Old English cærse, cressa; akin to Old High German kressa cress
First Known Use: before 12th centurySee Words from the same year
CRESS Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of cress for English Language Learners
: a small plant that has spicy leaves that are eaten especially in salads
CRESS Defined for Kids
Definition of cress for Students
: a small plant having leaves with a sharp taste that are eaten in salads
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up cress? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).