Webster 1913 Edition
[L., fr. Gr.
σπαργᾶνto swell with sap or juice, and Zend
çpareghaprong, sprout, Pers.
sphurjto swell. Perh. the Greek borrowed from the Persian. Cf.
A genus of perennial plants belonging to the natural order
Liliaceæ, and having erect much branched stems, and very slender branchlets which are sometimes mistaken for leaves.
Asparagus racemosusis a shrubby climbing plant with fragrant flowers. Specifically: The
Asparagus officinalis, a species cultivated in gardens.
The young and tender shoots of
Asparagus officinalis, which form a valuable and well-known article of food.
☞ This word was formerly pronounced
sparrowgrass; but this pronunciation is now confined exclusively to uneducated people.
a small beetle (
Crioceris asparagi) injurious to asparagus.
Webster 1828 Edition
Asparagus, sperage, vulgarly, sparrow-grass; a genus of plants. That which is cultivated in gardens, has an upright herbaceous stalk, bristly leaves, and equal stipulas. The roots have a bitterish mucilaginous taste; and the stalk is, in some degree, aperient and deobstruent, but not very efficacious.