1530s, from articiocco, Northern Italian variant of It. arcicioffo, from O.Sp. alcarchofa, from Arabic al-hursufa "artichoke." The Northern Italian variation probably is from influence of ciocco "stump." Folk-etymology has twisted the word in Eng.; the ending is probably influenced by choke, and early forms of the word in English include archecokk, hortichock, artychough, hartichoake. The plant was known in Italy by 1450s, brought to Florence from Naples in 1466, and introduced in England in the reign of Henry VIII. Fr. artichaut (16c.), Ger. Artischocke (16c.) both are also from Italian.