Word of the Day


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1. the plant on which grapes grow
2. any plant with a long thin stem that grows along the ground or up a tree, wall, etc.
3. the long thin stem of a plant that grows in this way

Origin and usage

The word vine comes from the Old French word ‘vigne’ meaning ‘vine’ or ‘vineyard’. It first appeared in English in the 1300s, and by the late 14th century was used to describe any plant that had a long thin stem that trailed or wrapped around.


The word vine refers to any variety of plant that has a long thin stem that either trails or climbs. Perhaps the most common type of vine is the grapevine – the long, twisting stems from which bunches of grapes hang as they ripen–but there are many other kinds.

Vines grow in one of four ways: hooked, clinging, twining or tendril.

Hooked vines, like climbing or rambling roses, use small hooks in their stems to attach themselves to plants, trees or artificial supports.

Clinging vines, like ivy and climbing hydrangea, grow tiny discs or tendrils on their stems that help the plant stick to walls, stones, trees and other surfaces.

Twining vines, including morning glory and honeysuckle, wrap their stems around any available support. These vines require some special care when grown in a home garden; otherwise they have a tendency to spread and may overtake other plants.

Finally, tendril vines, including sweet pea and grapevine, need a support pole or string to grow along because their delicate tendrils can only wrap around things that are very thin.


“We ought to do good to others as simply as a horse runs, or a bee makes honey, or a vine bears grapes season after season without thinking of the grapes it has borne.”
(Marcus Aurelius)

View the full definition in the Macmillan Dictionary.

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