[ hemp ]
/ hɛmp /


Also called Indian hemp, marijuana. a tall, coarse plant, Cannabis sativa, that is native to Asia but naturalized or cultivated in many parts of the world and is the source of a valuable fiber as well as drugs such as marijuana and hashish.Compare cannabis.
the tough fiber of this plant, used for making rope, coarse fabric, etc.
any of various plants resembling hemp.
any of various fibers similar to hemp.
a narcotic drug, as marijuana or hashish, prepared from the hemp plant.

Nearby words

  1. hemotoxin,
  2. hemotroph,
  3. hemotrophic,
  4. hemotropic,
  5. hemotympanum,
  6. hemp agrimony,
  7. hemp nettle,
  8. hemp tree,
  9. hempel,
  10. hempen

Origin of hemp

before 1000; Middle English; Old English henep, hænep; cognate with German Hanf, Greek kánnabis

Related formshemp·like, adjective

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for hemp

British Dictionary definitions for hemp


/ (hɛmp) /


Also called: cannabis, marijuana an annual strong-smelling Asian plant, Cannabis sativa, having tough fibres, deeply lobed leaves, and small greenish flowers: family CannabidaeceaeSee also Indian hemp
the fibre of this plant, used to make canvas, rope, etc
any of several narcotic drugs obtained from some varieties of this plant, esp from Indian hempSee bhang, cannabis, hashish, marijuana

Derived Formshempen or hemplike, adjective

Word Origin for hemp

Old English hænep; related to Old Norse hampr, Old High German hanaf, Greek kannabis, Dutch hennep

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 hemp



Old English hænep "hemp, cannabis sativa," from Proto-Germanic *hanapiz (cf. Old Saxon hanap, Old Norse hampr, Old High German hanaf, German Hanf), probably a very early Germanic borrowing of the same Scythian word that became Greek kannabis (see cannabis). As the name of the fiber made from the plant, by c.1300. Slang sense of "marijuana" dates from 1940s; though scientific use for the narcotic derived from hemp dates to 1870.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper