betel

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See also: bétel

English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Tamil வெற்றிலை(veṟṟilai), from [script needed](vettr, variety) [script needed] + இலை(ilai, leaf).[1]

Noun[edit]

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betel ‎(usually uncountable, plural betels)

  1. Either of two plants often used in combination:
    1. an evergreen Indian creeping shrub, Piper betle, whose dried leaves are chewed with betel nut: the betel pepper
    2. the seed of the betel palm, Areca catechu: the betel nut
    • 1958, R. K. Narayan, The Guide, Penguin, 1988, p. 194,
      Her face was flushed with the tingling effect of betel leaves.
  2. A quid (chewing preparation) containing these and other plant materials; paan.
    • 1934, George Orwell, Burmese Days, Chapter 1, [1]
      He went to the rail to spit out a scarlet mouthful of betel []
    • 2002, Vātsyāyana, Kama Sutra, translated by Wendy Doniger and Sudhir Kakar, Oxford University Press, 3.3.16, pp. 83-84,
      Within the range of his powers, he sends her, secretly, [] cosmetics such as red lac, red arsenic, yellow arsenic, red mercury sulphide, and black collyrium; sandalwood paste and saffron; and, in course of time, areca nuts and betel leaves for betel.

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References[edit]

  1. ^ Oxford English Dictionary