Open main menu


Turmeric (Curcuma longa)
Processed turmeric rhizomes


From Middle English turmeryte, tarmaret, of uncertain origin. Possibly from Old French terre mérite (deserving earth). According to Klein, possibly corrupted from Arabic كركم(Curcuma).


  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈtɜɹ.məɹ.ɪk/, [ˈtʰɝ.mɚ.ɪk], (nonstandard, sometimes proscribed) /ˈtuː.mə.ɹɪk/, [ˈtʰu.mɚ.ɪk]
  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈtɜː.m(ə).ɹɪk/, (nonstandard, sometimes proscribed) /ˈtjuː.m(ə).ɹɪk/, /ˈtʃuː.m(ə).ɹɪk/


turmeric (countable and uncountable, plural turmerics)

  1. (botany) An Indian plant, Curcuma longa, with aromatic rhizomes, part of the ginger family (Zingiberaceae).
  2. (cooking) The pulverized rhizome of the turmeric plant, used for flavoring and to add a bright yellow color to food.
    Synonym: haldi
  3. A yellow to reddish-brown dye extracted from the turmeric plant.
    Synonym: E100
    turmeric colour:  

Derived termsEdit


See alsoEdit


  • termerite (n.)” in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007, retrieved 2018-07-25.
  • Klein, Dr. Ernest, A Comprehensive Etymological Dictionary of the English Language, Amsterdam: Elsevier Scientific Publishing Co., 1971.

Further readingEdit