coffee

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English[edit]

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roasted coffee beans
coffee (beverage)

Etymology[edit]

From Italian caffè, from Turkish kahve, from Arabic قهوة (qahwa, coffee). Some Ethiopians claim a derivation from Kaffa, an ancient province of Ethiopia where coffee is said to have originated, but this etymology is highly improbable as it fails to explain the initial shift to the Arabic ‘qahwa’. At the same time, qahwa refers only to coffee in liquid form. When it is dry, either as beans or ground, Arabs call coffee بن (bunn). That word comes from ቡና (buna), the Amharic word for coffee.

Many sources state that the Arabic term meant ‘a brew’, especially wine.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

coffee (countable and uncountable, plural coffees)

  1. A beverage made by infusing the beans of the coffee plant in hot water.
    • 1621, Robert Burton, The Anatomy of Melancholy, II.5.1.v:
      The Turks have a drink called coffa (for they use no wine), so named of a berry as black as soot, and as bitter [...], which they sip still of, and sup as warm as they can suffer [...].
    • 1907, Robert Chambers, chapter 4, The Younger Set[1]:
      Both Selwyn and Lansing cut in coolly, dismissing the matter with a careless word or two; and coffee was served—cambric tea in Drina's case.
    • 2008, Agnes Poirier, The Guardian, 12 Apr 2008:
      As I sip a coffee at Brasserie Balzar, two well-known intellectuals, one publisher and a Sorbonne professor were discussing Sarkozy's future: "He won't finish his mandate" says one.
    • 2013 June 22, “T time”, The Economist, volume 407, number 8841, page 68: 
      [] a new study of how Starbucks has largely avoided paying tax in Britain [] shows that current tax rules make it easy for all sorts of firms to generate [] “stateless income”: [] . In Starbucks’s case, the firm has in effect turned the process of making an expensive cup of coffee into intellectual property.
  2. The seeds of the plant used to make coffee, misnamed ‘beans’ due to their shape.
  3. A tropical plant of the genus Coffea.
  4. (Discuss(+) this sense) A pale brown colour, like that of milk coffee.
    coffee colour:    
  5. The end of the meal—when coffee is usually served.
    He did not stay for coffee.

Synonyms[edit]

Translations[edit]

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Adjective[edit]

coffee (not comparable)

  1. Of a pale brown colour, like that of milk coffee.

Translations[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

See also[edit]

Verb[edit]

coffee (third-person singular simple present coffees, present participle coffeeing, simple past and past participle coffeed)

  1. (intransitive) To drink coffee.
    • 1839, Thomas Chandler Haliburton, The Clockmaker
      I rushed into my cabin, coffeed, wined, and went to bed sobbing.
    • 2010, Patrick Day, Too Late in the Afternoon: One Man's Triumph Over Depression
      It was exactly 11 a.m. We had been coffeeing for one hour, and our coffee cups were empty.

External links[edit]