awn

[ awn ]
/ ɔn /

noun Botany.

a bristlelike appendage of a plant, especially on the glumes of grasses.
such appendages collectively, as those forming the beard of wheat, barley, etc.
any similar bristle.

Origin of awn

1250–1300; Middle English aw(u)n, agune, agene, probably < Scandinavian; compare Old Norse ǫgn, Old Danish aghn husk; replacing and cognate with Old English ægnan; cognate with Gothic ahana, Old High German agana (German Agen, Ahne), Dutch, Frisian agen; OL agna ear of grain, Czech osina awn; Greek ákaina thorn, bristle, ákhnē chaff (< a pre-Hellenic substratum language); < Indo-European *Haeḱ- sharp

OTHER WORDS FROM awn

awned, adjectiveawn·less, adjectiveun·awned, adjective
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Examples from the Web for awn

British Dictionary definitions for awn

awn
/ (ɔːn) /

noun

any of the bristles growing from the spikelets of certain grasses, including cereals

Derived forms of awn

awned, adjectiveawnless, adjective

Word Origin for awn

Old English agen ear of grain; related to Old Norse ögn chaff, Gothic ahana, Old High German agana, Greek akōn javelin
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

Science definitions for awn

awn
[ ôn ]

A slender, bristlelike appendage found on the spikelets of many grasses.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.