arrowroot

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ar·row·root

 (ăr′ō-ro͞ot′, -ro͝ot′)
n.
1.
a. A starch obtained from the rhizomes of a tropical American perennial herb (Maranta arundinacea). It is used especially in cooking as a thickener.
b. The rhizome of this plant, cooked and eaten as a vegetable or used for starch extraction.
c. The plant itself.
2.
a. The edible starch obtained from the rhizomes or tubers of various other plants, including coontie.
b. Any of these plants.

[By folk etymology from Arawak aru-aru, meal of meals (from its being used to draw poison from arrow wounds).]
Word History: The arrowroot is just one of many plants that the European settlers and explorers discovered in the New World. The Arawak, a people who formerly lived on the Caribbean islands and continue to inhabit certain regions of Guiana, named this plant aru-aru, meaning "meal of meals," so called because they thought very highly of the starchy, nutritious meal made from the arrowroot. The plant also had medicinal value because its tubers could be used to draw poison from wounds inflicted by poison arrows. The medicinal application of the roots provided the impetus for English speakers to remake aru-aru into arrowroot, first recorded in English in 1696. Folk etymology—the process by which an unfamiliar element in a word is changed to resemble a more familiar word, often one that is semantically associated with the word being refashioned—has triumphed once again, giving us arrowroot instead of the direct borrowing of aru-aru.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

arrowroot

(ˈærəʊˌruːt)
n
1. (Plants) a white-flowered West Indian plant, Maranta arundinacea, whose rhizomes yield an easily digestible starch: family Marantaceae
2. (Elements & Compounds) the starch obtained from this plant
3. (Plants) any of several other plants whose rhizomes or roots yield starch
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014

ar•row•root

(ˈær oʊˌrut, -ˌrʊt)

n.
1. a tropical American plant, Maranta arundinacea, cultivated for its fleshy tubers, which yield an edible starch.
2. the fine-textured, readily digestible starch of this plant, used in cooking as a thickener and for bland diets.
3. any of several similar starches obtained from other tuberous plants.
[1690–1700]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.

arrowroot

A fine-grained starch prepared from the rhizomes of a tropical plant. Excellent for thickening sauces.
Dictionary of Unfamiliar Words by Diagram Group Copyright © 2008 by Diagram Visual Information Limited
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.arrowroot - a nutritive starch obtained from the root of the arrowroot plantarrowroot - a nutritive starch obtained from the root of the arrowroot plant
amylum, starch - a complex carbohydrate found chiefly in seeds, fruits, tubers, roots and stem pith of plants, notably in corn, potatoes, wheat, and rice; an important foodstuff and used otherwise especially in adhesives and as fillers and stiffeners for paper and textiles
2.arrowroot - white-flowered West Indian plant whose root yields arrowroot starcharrowroot - white-flowered West Indian plant whose root yields arrowroot starch
maranta - any of numerous herbs of the genus Maranta having tuberous starchy roots and large sheathing leaves
3.arrowroot - canna grown especially for its edible rootstock from which arrowroot starch is obtainedarrowroot - canna grown especially for its edible rootstock from which arrowroot starch is obtained
canna - any plant of the genus Canna having large sheathing leaves and clusters of large showy flowers
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
Translations
arrowrootmaranta arundinacea

arrowroot

[ˈærəʊruːt] Narrurruz m
Collins Spanish Dictionary - Complete and Unabridged 8th Edition 2005 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1971, 1988 © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2005

arrowroot

[ˈærəʊruːt] narrow-root m
Collins English/French Electronic Resource. © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
Antioxidant activity of ethanolic extract of Maranta Arundinacea. L tuberous rhizomes.
Organic Arrowroot Powder (maranta arundinacea): Deodorizing, healing, and antibacterial, and good for use on dry, irritated, or sensitive skin.