Bar"ley (?), n. [OE. barli, barlich, AS. baerlic; bere barley + lic (which is prob. the same as E. like, adj., or perh. a form of AS. leac leek). AS. bere is akin to Icel, barr barley, Goth. barizeins made of barley, L. far spelt; cf. W. barlys barley, bara bread. 92. Cf. Farina, 6th Bear.] Bot.
A valuable grain, of the family of grasses, genus Hordeum, used for food, and for making malt, from which are prepared beer, ale, and whisky.
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Barley bird Zool., the siskin. -- Barley sugar, sugar boiled till it is brittle (formerly with a decoction of barley) and candied. -- Barley water, a decoction of barley, used in medicine, as a nutritive and demulcent.
© Webster 1913.