[vej-i-tair-ee-uh n]


a person who does not eat or does not believe in eating meat, fish, fowl, or, in some cases, any food derived from animals, as eggs or cheese, but subsists on vegetables, fruits, nuts, grain, etc.


of or relating to vegetarianism or vegetarians.
devoted to or advocating this practice.
consisting solely of vegetables: vegetarian vegetable soup.

Origin of vegetarian

First recorded in 1835–45; veget(able) + -arian
Related formsnon·veg·e·tar·i·an, adjective, noun
Can be confusedvegan vegetarian Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for vegetarian

vegan, fruitarian, herbivorous

Examples from the Web for vegetarian

Contemporary Examples of vegetarian

Historical Examples of vegetarian

British Dictionary definitions for vegetarian



a person who advocates or practises vegetarianism


relating to, advocating, or practising vegetarianism
cookery strictly, consisting of vegetables and fruit only, but usually including milk, cheese, eggs, etc
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 vegetarian

1839, irregular formation from vegetable (n.) + -arian, as in agrarian, etc. "The general use of the word appears to have been largely due to the formation of the Vegetarian Society in Ramsgate in 1847" [OED].

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

vegetarian in Medicine




One who practices vegetarianism.


Of or relating to vegetarianism or vegetarians.
Consisting primarily or wholly of vegetables and vegetable products.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.