Rice (?), n. [F. riz (cf. Pr. ris, It. riso), L. oryza, Gr. , , probably from the Persian; cf. OPers. brizi, akin to Skr. vrihi; or perh. akin to E. rye. Cf. Rye.] Bot.

A well-known cereal grass (Oryza sativa) and its seed. This plant is extensively cultivated in warm climates, and the grain forms a large portion of the food of the inhabitants. In America it grows chiefly on low, moist land, which can be overflowed.

Ant rice. Bot. See under Ant. -- French rice. Bot. See Amelcorn. -- Indian rice., a tall reedlike water grass (Zizania aquatica), bearing panicles of a long, slender grain, much used for food by North American Indians. It is common in shallow water in the Northern States. Called also water oat, Canadian wild rice, etc. -- Mountain rice, any species of an American genus (Oryzopsis) of grasses, somewhat resembling rice. -- Rice bunting. Zool. Same as Ricebird. -- Rice hen Zool., the Florida gallinule. -- Rice mouse Zool., a large dark-colored field mouse (Calomys palistris) of the Southern United States. -- Rice paper, a kind of thin, delicate paper, brought from China, -- used for painting upon, and for the manufacture of fancy articles. It is made by cutting the pith of a large herb (Fatsia papyrifera, related to the ginseng) into one roll or sheet, which is flattened out under pressure. Called also pith paper. -- Rice troupial Zool., the bobolink. -- Rice water, a drink for invalids made by boiling a small quantity of rice in water. -- Rice-water discharge Med., a liquid, resembling rice water in appearance, which is vomited, and discharged from the bowels, in cholera. -- Rice weevil Zool., a small beetle (Calandra, ∨ Sitophilus, oryzae) which destroys rice, wheat, and Indian corn by eating out the interior; -- called also black weevil.


© Webster 1913.