plural -s
: a tree of the genus Metrosideros
especially : either of two New Zealand timber trees (M. robusta and M. lucida)
: the hard dark red wood of a rata tree used by the Maoris for paddles and war clubs
[borrowed from Tahitian rātā] : polynesian chestnut

Word History


borrowed from Maori rātā (going back to Polynesian *lata, *laataa name for Metrosideros or any of various other forest trees)

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Dictionary Entries Near rata

Cite this Entry

“Rata.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/rata. Accessed 24 Jul. 2024.

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