vegetable

noun
veg·​e·​ta·​ble | \ˈvej-tə-bəl, ˈve-jə-\

Definition of vegetable 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a usually herbaceous plant (such as the cabbage, bean, or potato) grown for an edible part that is usually eaten as part of a meal also : such an edible part

3a : a person having a dull or merely physical existence

b informal, sometimes offensive : a person whose mental and physical functioning is severely impaired and especially one who requires supportive measures (such as mechanical ventilation) to survive

vegetable

adjective

Definition of vegetable (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : of, relating to, constituting, or growing like plants

b : consisting of plants : vegetational

2 : made from, obtained from, or containing plants or plant products vegetable soup vegetable fat

3 : resembling or suggesting a plant (as in inertness or passivity)

Examples of vegetable in a Sentence

Noun

The doctor said I should eat more fruits and vegetables. a bowl of vegetable soup The accident had left him a vegetable.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Portraits of the governor and his wife posing with prize-winning vegetables (both are keen gardeners) decorate the walls of the family home in Ngabang, a town in the hills four hours’ drive from Pontianak, the provincial capital. The Economist, "Borneo againIndonesian Islamists open a new front in their war on tolerance," 20 July 2017 This summer, at the South Windsor Farmers Market, SoWin/EatsHealthy will be offering discounted boxes of fresh vegetables from local farmers. Courant Community, "Community News For The South Windsor Edition," 17 July 2017 The Saturday Muldoon Farmers Market will have baklava, baked goods, rhubarb, crafts and loads of vegetables, including salad mixes, tomatoes, radishes, greens, zucchini, bok choy and herbs. Steve Edwards, Alaska Dispatch News, "Market Fresh: Take a Valley farm tour, order a custom chicken coop or nab some peonies," 12 July 2017 Like going to the bathroom, or, conversely, being able to eat: Human waste will be treated through a bio-fermentation process, and experimental crops and vegetables will be grown with the help of food and waste byproducts. Rachel Jacoby Zoldan, Teen Vogue, "Beihang University Students Spend 200 Days Inside Sealed Space Craft," 11 July 2017 In rats with diabetes, the compound, which occurs naturally in cruciferous vegetables, had the intended effect, reversing the genetic signature in the animals’ livers. Jessica Wapner, MSNBC Newsweek, "Sulforaphane, a Chemical in Broccoli, May Help Diabetics Control Blood Sugar," 15 June 2017 Her family still has a small vegetable garden and a hillside plot filled with a few dozen white tea plants, but most of their crops have been replaced with cedar trees and a scattering of bamboo. Michael Holtz, The Christian Science Monitor, "China spent $100 billion on reforestation. So why does it have 'green deserts'?," 28 June 2017 That’s no surprise, perhaps, given the organic revolution and the proximity to the state’s absurdly fertile Central Valley, which produces half of the country’s fruits and vegetables. Derek Thompson, The Atlantic, "The Paradox of American Restaurants," 20 June 2017 The vendors sprawled across several streets with fresh fruits, vegetables, fish and coffee. Amanda Shine, Harper's BAZAAR, "How to Travel in Venice Like a Chic Ceramicist," 15 June 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Nitrogen-rich materials include succulent, green plant parts, such as tomato stalks, vegetable waste from the kitchen, and grass clippings, as well as manures. Lee Reich, The Seattle Times, "Fall is the perfect time to build a compost bin," 16 Oct. 2018 With over 50,000 acres, 150 buildings, and a fully working vegetable garden, Queen Elizabeth’s castle in the Scottish Highlands is the ultimate royal retreat. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "Where the European Royals Spend Their Summers," 30 July 2018 Go-to dinners include vegetable stir fry and pasta with tomato sauce. Jen Murphy, WSJ, "The Only Guy in the Barre Class," 14 July 2018 An inch of rain a week is necessary to replace that moisture and keep your vegetable garden happy and growing. Sally Mccabe, Philly.com, "July 6-12: In the garden, it's time to…," 5 July 2018 With the potato serving as the country’s largest vegetable crop, according to the US Department of Agriculture, no shortage of time and money has been devoted to tinkering with genetic traits in a hunt for the perfect potato. Dugan Arnett, BostonGlobe.com, "In northern Maine, a new spud rises," 12 June 2018 Finally, the right flap of the menu includes four meat entrees (the 16-ounce tomahawk veal chop is the most expensive item at $49), three fish entrees and three vegetable side dishes (all vegan). Mark Kurlyandchik, Detroit Free Press, "SheWolf is Michigan's only restaurant milling its own flour," 27 June 2018 Keep vegetable plantings moist to continue harvests into summer. Tom Maccubbin, OrlandoSentinel.com, "June in the garden," 26 May 2018 Monroe has had a hands-on living classroom learning lab for 23 years, giving students the opportunity to be part of a prairie, butterfly garden, Japanese garden, vegetable garden, pond and bee habitat. Chuck Fieldman, chicagotribune.com, "Monroe School is only elementary school in Illinois — and one of 46 nationally — to receive Green Ribbon School Award," 22 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'vegetable.' 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 vegetable

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for vegetable

Noun

Middle English, borrowed from Medieval Latin vegetābilia, plural noun derivative of vegetābilis vegetable entry 2

Adjective

Middle English, "capable of growth, of or like plants (able to grow but lacking motion or sensation)," borrowed from Medieval Latin vegetābilis, going back to Late Latin, "vivifying, refreshing," from vegetāre "to live, grow" + Latin -bilis "capable of (acting or being acted upon)" — more at vegetate, -able

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Time Traveler for vegetable

The first known use of vegetable was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for vegetable

vegetable

adjective
veg·​e·​ta·​ble | \ˈvej-tə-bəl, ˈve-jə-tə-\

Kids Definition of vegetable

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: containing or made from plants or parts of plants vegetable oil

vegetable

noun

Kids Definition of vegetable (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a plant or plant part (as lettuce, broccoli, or peas) grown for use as food and eaten raw or cooked usually as part of a meal

vegetable

adjective
veg·​e·​ta·​ble | \ˈvej-tə-bəl, ˈvej-ət-ə- \

Medical Definition of vegetable 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : of, relating to, constituting, or growing like plants

b : consisting of plants

2 : made or obtained from plants or plant products

vegetable

noun

Medical Definition of vegetable (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a usually herbaceous plant (as the cabbage, bean, or potato) grown for an edible part also : such an edible part

2 : a person whose mental and physical functioning is severely impaired and especially one who requires supportive measures (as intravenous feeding or mechanical ventilation) to survive

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More from Merriam-Webster on vegetable

Spanish Central: Translation of vegetable

Nglish: Translation of vegetable for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of vegetable for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about vegetable

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