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[kahr-duh-muh m] /ˈkɑr də məm/
the aromatic seed capsules of a tropical Asian plant, Elettaria cardamomum, of the ginger family, used as a spice or condiment and in medicine.
the plant itself.
a related plant, Amomum compactum, or its seeds, used as a substitute for true cardamom.
Also, cardamon
[kahr-duh-muh n] /ˈkɑr də mən/ (Show IPA),
Origin of cardamom
1350-1400; Middle English (< Middle French) < Latin cardamōmum < Greek kardámōnon, blend of kárdamon cress and ámōmon a spice plant Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for cardamon
Historical Examples
  • Add one chive, one cardamon, two cloves, half a nutmeg and salt to taste.

  • Your pa in his day ate three carloads of cardamon seeds and cloves and used listerine by the barrel.

    In Our Town William Allen White
  • Color the liquid yellow with a little turmeric; add salt, six cloves, two cardamon seeds, and twelve pepper berries.

    The Khaki Kook Book Mary Kennedy Core
  • The butter also is omitted at the last, but the almond, rose water, and cardamon seed are usually added.

    The Khaki Kook Book Mary Kennedy Core
  • I'm sure she had cardamon seeds in her shabby bag, and a carriage with a crest on it waiting for her just around the corner.

British Dictionary definitions for cardamon


a tropical Asian zingiberaceous plant, Elettaria cardamomum, that has large hairy leaves
the seeds of this plant, used esp as a spice or condiment
a related East Indian plant, Amomum cardamomum, whose seeds are used as a substitute for cardamom seeds
Word Origin
C15: from Latin cardamōmum, from Greek kardamōmon, from kardamon cress + amōmon an Indian spice
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
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Word Origin and History for cardamon



1550s, from French cardamome, from Latin cardamomum, from Greek kardamomon, from kardamon "cress" (of unknown origin) + amomon "spice plant." The word was in English from late 14c. in Latin form.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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