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also hen·e·quin  (hĕn′ĭ-kwĭn)
1. A tropical American plant (Agave fourcroydes) having thick, sword-shaped leaves that yield a coarse reddish fiber used in making rope and twine.
2. The fiber obtained from this plant.

[Spanish henequén, perhaps of Arawakan origin.]
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.


(ˈhɛnɪkɪn) ,




1. (Plants) an agave plant, Agave fourcroydes, that is native to Yucatán
2. (Plants) the fibre of this plant, used in making rope, twine, and coarse fabrics
[C19: from American Spanish henequén, probably of Taino origin]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


or hen•e•quin

(ˈhɛn ə kɪn)

the fiber of an agave, Agave fourcroydes, of Yucatán, used for making ropes, coarse fabrics, etc.
[1875–80; < American Spanish henequén]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Prior to World War II, rope was made from natural fibers such as sisal, henequen and abaca (manila), jute, and hemp.
Layers of history in and around town Between colonial towns, crumbling stone walls along the roadsides surround henequen plantations, whose spiky gray-green plants (agaves) once yielded fiber that made much of the world's rope.
Natural fibers can be classified according to their origin and grouped into leaf: abaca, cantala, curaua, date palm, henequen, pineapple, sisal, banana; seed: cotton; bast: flax, hemp, jute, ramie; fruit: coir, kapok, oil palm; grass: alfa, bagasse, bamboo and stalk: straw (cereal).