Webster 1828 Edition



, n.
The berry of a tree belonging to the genus Coffea, growing in Arabia, Persia, and in other warm climates of Asia and America. It will grow to the highth of 16 or 18 feet, but its growth is generally stinted to five feet, for the convenience of gathering the fruit. The stem is upright, and covered with a light brown bark; the branches are horizontal and opposite, crossing each other at every joint, and forming a sort of pyramid. The flowers grow in clusters at the root of the leaves, and close to the branches; they are of a pure white and of an agreeable odor. The fruit which is a berry, grows in clusters, along the branches, under the axils of the leaves.
A drink made from the berry of the coffee-tree, by decoction. The berry is first roasted, and then ground in a mill, and boiled. The use of it is said to have been introduced into France by Thevenot, the traveler, and into England, in 1652, by a Greek servant, called Pasqua. The best coffee is said to be the Mocha coffee from Arabia Felix. The coffee of Java, Bourbon and the West Indies constitutes an important article of commerce.

Definition 2024




roasted coffee beans
coffee (beverage)


coffee (countable and uncountable, plural coffees)

  1. A beverage made by infusing the beans of the coffee plant in hot water.
    • 1621, Robert Burton, The Anatomy of Melancholy, II.5.1.v:
      The Turks have a drink called coffa (for they use no wine), so named of a berry as black as soot, and as bitter [], which they sip still of, and sup as warm as they can suffer [].
    • 1907, Robert W[illiam] Chambers, “chapter IV”, in The Younger Set (Project Gutenberg; EBook #14852), New York, N.Y.: A. L. Burt Company, published 1 February 2005 (Project Gutenberg version), OCLC 4241346:
      "He was here," observed Drina composedly, "and father was angry with him." ¶ "What?" exclaimed Eileen. "When?" ¶ "This morning, before father went downtown." ¶ Both Selwyn and Lansing cut in coolly, dismissing the matter with a careless word or two; and coffee was servedcambric tea in Drina's case.
    • 2008, Agnes Poirier, The Guardian, 12 April:
      As I sip a coffee at Brasserie Balzar, two well-known intellectuals, one publisher and a Sorbonne professor were discussing Sarkozy's future: "He won't finish his mandate" says one.
    • 2013 June 22, T time”, in The Economist, volume 407, number 8841, page 68:
      [] a new study of how Starbucks has largely avoided paying tax in Britain [] shows that current tax rules make it easy for all sorts of firms to generate [] “stateless income”: []. In Starbucks’s case, the firm has in effect turned the process of making an expensive cup of coffee into intellectual property.
  2. The seeds of the plant used to make coffee, misnamed ‘beans’ due to their shape.
  3. A tropical plant of the genus Coffea.
  4. (Discuss(+) this sense) A pale brown colour, like that of milk coffee.
    coffee colour:    
  5. The end of a meal, when coffee is served.
    He did not stay for coffee.


  • Wikisaurus:coffee
  • Wikisaurus:color



coffee (not comparable)

  1. Of a pale brown colour, like that of milk coffee.
  2. Of a table: a small, low table suitable for people in lounge seating to put coffee cups on


Derived terms

See also


coffee (third-person singular simple present coffees, present participle coffeeing, simple past and past participle coffeed)

  1. (intransitive) To drink coffee.
    • 1839, Thomas Chandler Haliburton, The Clockmaker
      I rushed into my cabin, coffeed, wined, and went to bed sobbing.
    • 2010, Patrick Day, Too Late in the Afternoon: One Man's Triumph Over Depression
      It was exactly 11 a.m. We had been coffeeing for one hour, and our coffee cups were empty.