Cur"rant (k?r"rant), n. [F. corinthe (raisins de Corinthe raisins of Corinth) currant (in sense 1), from the city of Corinth in Greece, whence, probably, the small dried grape (1) was first imported, the Ribes fruit (2) receiving the name from its resemblance to that grape.]
A small kind of seedless raisin, imported from the Levant, chiefly from Zante and Cephalonia; -- used in cookery.
The acid fruit or berry of the Ribes rubrum or common red currant, or of its variety, the white currant.
A shrub or bush of several species of the genus Ribes (a genus also including the gooseberry); esp., the Ribes rubrum.
Black currant,a shrub or bush (Ribes nigrum and R. floridum) and its black, strong-flavored, tonic fruit. -- Cherry currant, a variety of the red currant, having a strong, symmetrical bush and a very large berry. -- Currant borer Zool., the larva of an insect that bores into the pith and kills currant bushes; specif., the larvae of a small clearwing moth (Aegeria tipuliformis) and a longicorn beetle (Psenocerus supernotatus). -- Currant worm Zool., an insect larva which eats the leaves or fruit of the currant. The most injurious are the currant sawfly (Nematus ventricosus), introduced from Europe, and the spanworm (Eufitchia ribearia). The fruit worms are the larva of a fly (Epochra Canadensis), and a spanworm (Eupithecia). -- Flowering currant, Missouri currant, a species of Ribes (R. aureum), having showy yellow flowers.
© Webster 1913.