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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Potato \Po*ta"to\, n.; pl. Potatoes. [Sp. patata potato, batata sweet potato, from the native American name (probably batata) in Hayti.] (Bot.)

  1. A plant ( Solanum tuberosum) of the Nightshade family, and its esculent farinaceous tuber, of which there are numerous varieties used for food. It is native of South America, but a form of the species is found native as far north as New Mexico.

  2. The sweet potato (see below). Potato beetle, Potato bug. (Zo["o]l.)

    1. A beetle ( Doryphora decemlineata) which feeds, both in the larval and adult stages, upon the leaves of the potato, often doing great damage. Called also Colorado potato beetle, and Doryphora. See Colorado beetle.

    2. The Lema trilineata, a smaller and more slender striped beetle which feeds upon the potato plant, bur does less injury than the preceding species. Potato fly (Zo["o]l.), any one of several species of blister beetles infesting the potato vine. The black species ( Lytta atrata), the striped ( Lytta vittata), and the gray ( Lytta Fabricii syn. Lytta cinerea) are the most common. See Blister beetle, under Blister. Potato rot, a disease of the tubers of the potato, supposed to be caused by a kind of mold ( Peronospora infestans), which is first seen upon the leaves and stems. Potato weevil (Zo["o]l.), an American weevil ( Baridius trinotatus) whose larva lives in and kills the stalks of potato vines, often causing serious damage to the crop. Potato whisky, a strong, fiery liquor, having a hot, smoky taste, and rich in amyl alcohol (fusel oil); it is made from potatoes or potato starch. Potato worm (Zo["o]l.), the large green larva of a sphinx, or hawk moth ( Macrosila quinquemaculata); -- called also tomato worm. See Illust. under Tomato. Seaside potato (Bot.), Ipom[oe]a Pes-Capr[ae], a kind of morning-glory with rounded and emarginate or bilobed leaves. [West Indies] Sweet potato (Bot.), a climbing plant ( Ipom[oe]a Balatas) allied to the morning-glory. Its farinaceous tubers have a sweetish taste, and are used, when cooked, for food. It is probably a native of Brazil, but is cultivated extensively in the warmer parts of every continent, and even as far north as New Jersey. The name potato was applied to this plant before it was to the Solanum tuberosum, and this is the ``potato'' of the Southern United States. Wild potato. (Bot.)

      1. A vine ( Ipom[oe]a pandurata) having a pale purplish flower and an enormous root. It is common in sandy places in the United States.

      2. A similar tropical American plant ( Ipom[oe]a fastigiata) which it is thought may have been the original stock of the sweet potato.


n. (plural of potato English)

  1. n. an edible tuber native to South America; a staple food of Ireland [syn: white potato, Irish potato, murphy, spud, tater]

  2. annual native to South America having underground stolons bearing edible starchy tubers; widely cultivated as a garden vegetable; vines are poisonous [syn: white potato, white potato vine, Solanum tuberosum]

  3. [also: potatoes (pl)]


See potato

Usage examples of "potatoes".

Probably, I figured, and so indeed it turned out, Matzerath, having slaughtered, cleaned, washed, cooked, seasoned, and tasted his eels, had put them down on the living room table in the form of eel soup with boiled potatoes, and when the others showed no sign of sitting down, had gone so far as to sing the praises of his dish, listing all the ingredients and intoning the recipe like a litany.

I've heard enough of that song and dance, we're having eels and that's that, with milk, mustard, parsley, and boiled potatoes, a bay leaf goes in and a clove, no, no, please Alfred, don't make eels if she doesn't want them, you keep out of this, I didn't buy eels to throw them away, they'll be nicely cleaned and washed, no, no, we'll see when they're on the table, we'll see who eats and who don't eat.

There was meat loaf with boiled potatoes, red cabbage, and for dessert chocolate pudding with vanilla sauce.

Sometimes he seemed to stick in the ground and then to stick in mid-air, short and wide, time enough to wipe his face before his foot came down again in the freshly plowed field, which bordered the five acres of potatoes and narrowed into a sunken lane.

Responding to a sudden inspiration, they upset the two baskets under my grandmother's elbows almost simultaneously and were quite bewildered when nothing but potatoes came rolling out, and no Koljaiczek.

Full of suspicion, they crept round the stack of potatoes, as though Koljaiczek had somehow got into it, thrust in their bayonets as though deliberately taking aim, and were disappointed to hear no cry.

Returning to the fire, they recovered the mealy, steaming spuds and then, wearied and rather mellowed by their battles, decided to pick up the raw potatoes and put them back into the baskets which they had overturned in line of duty.

Then with her basket, her potatoes, her rake, and her hoe, she set off, like a sail billowing in the breeze, in the direction of Bissau Quarry.

         He took his nasty old book away and leafed expressionlessly through the pages, leaving me standing amid potatoes and several representatives of the cabbage family, white cabbage, red cabbage, savoy cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and kohlrabi, wretchedly lonely, for I had left my drum at home.

         Certain that this family skat game, briefly interrupted by scrambled eggs, mushrooms, and fried potatoes, would go on far into the night, I scarcely listened to the hands that followed, but tried to find my way back to Sister Inge and her white, sleepy-making uniforms.

One Sunday when green eels with new potatoes swimming in cream sauce were set on the table, Grandma Koljaiczek smacked the table with the flat of her hand and cried out: "What's the matter, Agnes?

Mama only shook her head, pushed the potatoes aside, pulled out an eel through the sauce, and set to with relentless determination.

He believed neither in potatoes nor in cabbage, yet he knew a great deal about vegetable-raising and liked to think of himself as a gardener, a friend of nature, and a vegetarian.

A customer who brought twenty pounds of potatoes was regaled, as a kind of premium, with "On the Sunny Shores of the Saale".

Blowing into and rubbing his own hands, which were nicely kept in spite of the potatoes, he would sometimes, in my hearing, say to Matzerath, who had been chiding him over his wife: "Of course you're perfectly right, Alfred.