or be·tel pepper
- an East Indian pepper plant, Piper betle, the leaves of which are chewed with other ingredients.
Origin of betel
1545–55; < Portuguese bétele, bétere < Malayalam viṟṟila or Tamil veṟṟilai
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for betel
Later, if they decide to separate, the couple must break a betel nut to break the union.A Little Too Off the Beaten Path in Burma
June 2, 2014
In India the fruits are chewed by the natives with their betel.
The chiefs were chewing cinnamon and betel till their mouths were red.The Great White Tribe in Filipinia
Paul T. Gilbert
Ossaroo showed his young masters how the betel was prepared for chewing.The Plant Hunters
Betel and nuts are also given to all the persons assembled at the place.
They are also given a small amount of money, rice, betel leaf, etc.
- an Asian piperaceous climbing plant, Piper betle, the leaves of which are chewed, with the betel nut, by the peoples of SE Asia
C16: from Portuguese, from Malayalam vettila
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Word Origin and History for betel
1550s, probably via Portuguese betel, from Malayalam vettila, from veru ila "simple leaf."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper