fruit

noun, often attributive
\ ˈfrüt How to pronounce fruit (audio) \
plural fruits

Definition of fruit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a product of plant growth (such as grain, vegetables, or cotton) the fruits of the field
b(1) : the usually edible reproductive body of a seed plant especially : one having a sweet pulp associated with the seed the fruit of the tree
(2) : a succulent (see succulent entry 1 sense 1c) plant part (such as the petioles (see petiole sense 1) of a rhubarb plant) used chiefly in a dessert or sweet course
c : a dish, quantity, or diet of fruits live on fruit
d : a product of fertilization (see fertilization sense b) in a plant with its modified envelopes or appendages specifically : the ripened ovary (see ovary sense 2) of a seed plant and its contents
e : the flavor or aroma of fresh fruit in mature wine The wine's fruit is rich in tangerine, apricot, and papaya flavors.
2 : offspring, progeny the fruit of the womb
3a : the state of bearing fruit a tree in fruit
b : the effect or consequence of an action or operation : product, result the fruits of our labor the fruits of victory
4 slang, offensive : a gay person used as a term of abuse and disparagement

fruit

verb
fruited; fruiting; fruits

Definition of fruit (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to bear fruit

transitive verb

: to cause to bear fruit

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from fruit

Noun

fruited \ ˈfrü-​təd How to pronounce fruit (audio) \ adjective

Examples of fruit in a Sentence

Noun apples, oranges, and other fruits one fruit of your faithfulness in carrying out your duties will be more rewarding responsibilities Verb When will the trees fruit?
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The hanging fruits had been emblazoned with the letters of the Black sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha, Inc. Veronica Hilbring, Essence.com, "US Mint Employee Suspended After Leaving Noose On Black Colleague’s Desk," 11 July 2017 My feeling is generally in the case of summer fruit pies, if things are in season and at their peak bounty, why be skimpy? Rick Martinez, Bon Appetit, "How to Make the Best Blueberry Pie and Maybe Also Find Love," 8 July 2017 The ripe fruit character (especially the melon) will match well with the delicate flavors of the cucumber and herbs. Michael Austin, chicagotribune.com, "How to pair gazpacho with summer wines," 3 July 2017 Each book tells the different, often silly uses for the fruits. South Florida Parenting, "Summer reading: Books to keep kids learning," 3 July 2017 Fruits and vegetables are easy, but whole grains can be confusing. Bryant Stamford, The Courier-Journal, "If you see 'whole wheat,' it's definitely healthy, right? Sorry, maybe not," 6 July 2017 Just fill an empty spray bottle with diluted vinegar and spritz your produce (salad stuff, fruits, etc.) then rinse in regular water before serving. Elizabeth Narins, Cosmopolitan, "13 Reasons Apple Cider Vinegar Is the Magic Potion You Need in Your Life," 3 July 2017 Clean spill where fruit flies are landing and prep potatoes away from the handwashing station where backsplash can get onto the potatoes. Kaitlyn Schwers, kansascity.com, "Cass County restaurant inspections: June 1-15," 28 June 2017 Together the three of them came up with a plan, which eventually evolved into an idea for a vast chain of replicable schools, their growth powered by small tuition payments from working parents — fruit sellers, night watchmen and washerwomen. Peg Tyre, New York Times, "Can a Tech Start-Up Successfully Educate Children in the Developing World?," 27 June 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Or, likewise, the collective known as Fallen Fruit, who attempts to make the access to fruit more open-source through their maps of trees, largely in Los Angeles. Emma Orlow, Vogue, "In Kate Lebo’s New Memoir-Cookbook, Fruit Is a Complicated Subject," 1 Apr. 2021 How to remember a disaster without being shattered by it Could fruit flies help match patients with cancer treatments? Elizabeth Kolbert, Wired, "How Far Should Humans Go to Help Species Adapt?," 13 Mar. 2021 How to remember a disaster without being shattered by it Could fruit flies help match patients with cancer treatments? Elizabeth Kolbert, Wired, "How Far Should Humans Go to Help Species Adapt?," 13 Mar. 2021 How to remember a disaster without being shattered by it Could fruit flies help match patients with cancer treatments? Clive Thompson, Wired, "Good-bye Zoom. Hello Low-Key Ambient Snooping," 10 Mar. 2021 The store’s offerings run the gamut from cinnamon cake to sticky buns to fruit Danish and chocolate croissants. Mary Carole Mccauley, baltimoresun.com, "Sweet success: Four generations and 90 years of Goll’s bakery in Havre de Grace," 26 Feb. 2021 Unfortunately, no watermelon can be expected to fruit. Nicola Fumo, Forbes, "11 Pet-Safe Plants To Brighten Up Your Space," 26 Feb. 2021 The vintners produce it all, from European-style blends to fruit wines. Charles Passy, WSJ, "New Jersey Winemakers Bank on Bubbly," 30 Dec. 2020 Potbellied pigs require a diet of grain, vegetables and occasionally fruit. Traci Howerton, NOLA.com, "They're smart, clean and snuggly: Try a potbellied pig as your next pet," 29 Oct. 2020

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

See More

First Known Use of fruit

Noun

12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for fruit

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French frut, fruit, from Latin fructus fruit, use, from frui to enjoy, have the use of — more at brook

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about fruit

Time Traveler for fruit

Time Traveler

The first known use of fruit was in the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for fruit

Cite this Entry

“Fruit.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fruit. Accessed 15 Apr. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for fruit

fruit

noun

English Language Learners Definition of fruit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a usually sweet food (such as a blueberry, orange, or apple) that grows on a tree or bush
technical : the part of a plant that has the seeds in it (such as the pod of a pea, a nut, a grain, or a berry)
: a result or reward that comes from some action or activity

fruit

verb

English Language Learners Definition of fruit (Entry 2 of 2)

technical : to produce fruit

fruit

noun
\ ˈfrüt How to pronounce fruit (audio) \

Kids Definition of fruit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a usually soft and juicy plant part (as rhubarb, a strawberry, or an orange) that is often eaten as a dessert and is distinguished from a vegetable
2 : a product of fertilization in a seed plant that consists of the ripened ovary of a flower with its included seeds Apples, cucumbers, nuts, and blueberries are all fruits.
3 : result entry 2 sense 1, product You can enjoy the fruits of your labors.

Other Words from fruit

fruited \ -​əd \ adjective a fruited plant

fruit

verb
fruited; fruiting

Kids Definition of fruit (Entry 2 of 2)

: to bear or cause to bear fruit

fruit

noun, often attributive
\ ˈfrüt How to pronounce fruit (audio) \

Medical Definition of fruit

1 : the usually edible reproductive body of a seed plant especially : one having a sweet pulp associated with the seed the fruit of the tree
2 : a product of fertilization in a plant with its modified envelopes or appendages specifically : the ripened ovary of a seed plant and its contents

Keep scrolling for more

fruit

noun

Legal Definition of fruit

1a : something (as evidence) that is obtained or gathered during an action or operation (as a search) moved to suppress evidence seized from the room on the grounds that it was obtained as the fruit of an illegal arrestNational Law Journal
b plural : fruit of the poisonous tree the Court was asked to extend the…fruit doctrineOregon v. Elstad, 470 U.S. 298 (1985)
2a in the civil law of Louisiana : property (as income or goods) produced by or derived from other movable or immovable property without diminution of its substance co-owners share the fruits and products of the thing heldLouisiana Civil Code — compare product sense 3
civil fruit
: the revenue derived from property especially by virtue of an obligation (as a lease)
natural fruit
: an animal or plant product (as a crop)
b : income that is produced or earned by other property or services

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on fruit

What made you want to look up fruit? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Typeshift

Anagram puzzles meet word search.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!