Also called fescue grass. any grass of the genus Festuca, some species of which are cultivated for pasture or lawns.
a pointer, as a straw or slender stick, used to point out the letters in teaching children to read.

Origin of fescue

1350–1400; earlier festue, Middle English festu < Middle French < Vulgar Latin *festūcum, for Latin festūca stalk, straw
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for fescue

Historical Examples of fescue

  • Meadow fescue is a palatable grass that would be used more often in pasture mixtures if the seed were not high in price.

  • This burrow is a vertical well, with a curb of fescue grass intertwined with silk.

    The Life of the Fly

    J. Henri Fabre

  • The reader is probably acquainted with the Fescue Grass, with its awned flowers arranged in one-sided panicles.

    The Sea Shore

    William S. Furneaux

  • The fescue (Festuca ovina), a little fern (Woodsia), and a saussurea ascend very near the summit.

    The Heart of Nature

    Francis Younghusband

  • Meadow Fescue is one of the most common of the fescue grasses, and is said to be the Randall grass of Virginia.

British Dictionary definitions for fescue


fescue grass


any grass of the genus Festuca : widely cultivated as pasture and lawn grasses, having stiff narrow leavesSee also meadow fescue, sheep's fescue

Word Origin for fescue

C14: from Old French festu, ultimately from Latin festūca stem, straw
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 fescue

1510s, "teacher's pointer," alteration of festu "piece of straw, twig" (late 14c.), from Old French festu (Modern French fétu), a kind of straw, from Vulgar Latin festucum, from Latin festuca "straw, stalk, rod," probably related to ferula (see ferule). Sense of "pasture, lawn grass" is first recorded 1762.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper