nutmeg

nutmeg (n.) "hard aromatic seed of the East Indies," c.1300, from O.N.Fr. or Anglo-Fr. *noiz mugue, from O.Fr. nois muguete, unexplained alteration of nois muscade "nut smelling like musk," from nois "nut" (from L. nux) + L. muscada, fem. of muscat "musky" (see MUSCAT (Cf. muscat)). Probably influenced in English by M.L. nux maga (Cf. unaltered Du. muskaatnoot, Ger. muscatnuß, Swed. muskotnöt).
American English colloquial wooden nutmeg "anything false or fraudulent" is from 1830. Connecticut is called the Nutmeg State "in allusion to the story that wooden nutmegs are there manufactured for exportation." [John Russell Bartlett, "Dictionary of Americanisms," 1859]

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Nutmeg — Nut meg, n. [OE. notemuge; note nut + OF. muge musk, of the same origin as E. musk; cf. OF. noix muguette nutmeg, F. noix muscade. See {Nut}, and {Musk}.] (Bot.) The kernel of the fruit of the nutmeg tree ({Myristica fragrans}), a native of the… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • nutmeg — [nut′meg΄] n. [ME notemygge, partial transl. of OFr nois muguete < Prov noiz muscade, lit., musky nut < L nux, NUT + LL muscus, MUSK] 1. the hard, aromatic seed of an East Indian tree (Myristica fragrans) of the nutmeg family: it is grated… …   English World dictionary

  • nutmeg — ► NOUN ▪ a spice made from the seed of a tropical tree native to the Moluccas. ORIGIN partial translation of Old French nois muguede musky nut …   English terms dictionary

  • Nutmeg — For other uses, see Nutmeg (disambiguation). Nutmeg Myristica fragrans Scientific classification Kingdom …   Wikipedia

  • nutmeg — nutmegged, adj. /nut meg/, n. 1. the hard, aromatic seed of the fruit of an East Indian tree, Myristica fragrans, used in grated form as a spice. 2. the similar product of certain other trees of the same genus or other genera. 3. a tree bearing… …   Universalium

  • nutmeg — noun Etymology: Middle English notemigge, notemuge, ultimately from Old Occitan noz muscada, from noz nut (from Latin nuc , nux) + muscada, feminine of muscat musky more at muscat Date: 15th century 1. an aromatic seed produced by an evergreen… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • nutmeg — 1. noun /ˈnʌtmɛɡ/ a) an evergreen tree, Myristica fragrans, cultivated in the East Indies for its spicy seeds b) the aromatic seed of this tree, used as a spice 2. verb …   Wiktionary

  • nutmeg — [[t]nʌ̱tmeg[/t]] N UNCOUNT Nutmeg is a spice made from the seed of a tree that grows in hot countries. Nutmeg is usually used to flavour sweet food …   English dictionary

  • nutmeg — UK [ˈnʌtmeɡ] / US [ˈnʌtˌmeɡ] noun [countable/uncountable] Word forms nutmeg : singular nutmeg plural nutmegs a brown powder used as a spice to give flavour to food. It comes from the hard seed of a tropical tree …   English dictionary

  • nutmeg — nut•meg [[t]ˈnʌt mɛg[/t]] n. 1) pln the hard, aromatic seed of an East Indian tree, Myristica fragrans, of the nutmeg family, used in grated form as a spice 2) pln a similar seed of certain related trees 3) pln a tree bearing the nutmeg seed •… …   From formal English to slang

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