rhubarb
Pronunciation
  • (RP) IPA: /ˈɹuːbɑːb/
  • (GA) IPA: /ˈɹuˌbɑɹb/
Noun

rhubarb

  1. Any plant#Noun|plant of the genus Rheum, especially Rheum rhabarbarum, having large leaves and long green#Adjective|green or reddish acidic leafstalks that are edible, in particular when cooked (although the leaves are mildly poisonous).
  2. (often, attributive) The leafstalks of common rhubarb or garden rhubarb (usually known as Rheum × hybridum), which are long, fleshy, often pale#Adjective|pale red, and with a tart#Adjective|tart taste#Noun|taste, used as a food ingredient; they are frequently stew#Verb|stewed with sugar#Noun|sugar and made into jam#Noun|jam or used in crumble#Noun|crumbles, pies, etc.
  3. The dried rhizome and roots of Rheum palmatum (Chinese rhubarb) or Rheum officinale (Tibetan rhubarb), from China, used as a laxative and purgative.
    • 1661, Robert Lovell, “Anthropologia, &c. Of Man. &c.”, in ΠΑΝΖΩΟΡΥΚΤΟΛΟΓΙΑ [PANZŌORYKTOLOGIA]. Sive Panzoologicomineralogia. Or a Compleat History of Animals and Minerals, Containing the Summe of All Authors, both Ancient and Modern, Galenicall and Chymicall, [...], Oxford: Printed by Hen[ry] Hall, for Jos[eph] Godwin, OCLC 79920846 ↗, page 388 ↗:
      The running of the reines or gonorrhœa, which is an exceſſive and involuntary profuſion of ſperm, cauſed, by its proper vice, and that of the ſpermatick parts; it's cured, […] if the ſperm be hot & ſharp, by phlebotomy, rhubarb, myrobalans, ſuccory, the foure greater cold ſeeds, anointing the ſpine and loines, with refrigerating unguents, the cerot of ſaunders, and comitiſſæ; {{...}
  4. (Britain, military, aviation, historical) A Royal Air Force World War II code name for operations by aircraft (fighters and fighter-bombers) involving low-level flight#Noun|flight to seek opportunistic target#Noun|targets.
Synonyms
  • (common rhubarb) tusky (dialectal)
Related terms Translations Adjective

rhubarb (not comparable)

  1. Of the colour#Noun|colour of rhubarb: either brownish-yellow (the colour of rhubarb rhizomes and roots used for medicinal purposes), or pale#Adjective|pale red (often the colour of the leafstalks of common rhubarb).
Verb

rhubarb (rhubarbs, present participle rhubarbing; past and past participle rhubarbed)

  1. (Britain, military, aviation) Of fighter aircraft: to fire#Verb|fire at a target#Noun|target opportunistically.
Noun

rhubarb

  1. (originally, theater, uncountable) General background noise#Noun|noise caused by several simultaneous indecipherable conversations, which is created in film#Noun|films, stage#Noun|stage play#Noun|plays, etc., by actors repeat#Verb|repeating the word rhubarb; hence, such noise in other settings; rhubarb rhubarb, rhubarb rhubarb rhubarb.
  2. (US, originally, baseball, countable) An excited, angry exchange of words, especially at a sporting event.
  3. (US, originally, baseball, by extension, countable) A brawl#Noun|brawl.
Verb

rhubarb (rhubarbs, present participle rhubarbing; past and past participle rhubarbed)

  1. (intransitive, originally, theater) Of an actor in a film, stage play, etc.: to repeat the word rhubarb to create the sound of indistinct conversation; hence, to converse#Verb|converse indistinctly, to mumble#Verb|mumble.
  2. (transitive) To articulate#Verb|articulate indistinctly or mumble (word#Noun|words or phrase#Noun|phrases); to say inconsequential or vague things because one does not know what to say, or to stall#Verb|stall for time#Noun|time.



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