[ puh-pah-yuh ]
/ pəˈpɑ yə /


the large, yellow, melonlike fruit of a tropical American shrub or small tree, Carica papaya, eaten raw or cooked.
the tree itself.

Origin of papaya

1760–70; < Spanish < Carib (Hispaniola)
Also called pawpaw.
Related formspa·pa·yan, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for papaya

British Dictionary definitions for papaya


/ (pəˈpaɪə) /


a Caribbean evergreen tree, Carica papaya, with a crown of large dissected leaves and large green hanging fruit: family Caricaceae
the fruit of this tree, having a yellow or reddish orange sweet edible pulp and small black seeds
Also called: papaw, pawpaw
Derived Formspapayan, adjective

Word Origin for papaya

C15 papaye, from Spanish papaya, from an American Indian language; compare Carib ababai
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 papaya



1590s for fruit, 1610s for tree, from Spanish, probably from Arawakan (West Indies) papaya.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper