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green pea

pea1 (defs 1–3).


[pee] /pi/
noun, plural peas (Archaic or British Dialect) pease or peasen [pee-zuh n] /ˈpi zən/ (Show IPA)
the round, edible seed of a widely cultivated plant, Pisum sativum, of the legume family.
the plant itself.
the green, somewhat inflated pod of this plant.
any of various related or similar plants or their seed, as the chickpea.
something resembling a pea, especially in being small and round.
pertaining to, growing, containing, or cooked with peas:
We cultivated some tomato vines and a pea patch.
small or small and round (usually used in combination).
Also called English pea, garden pea, green pea (for defs 1, 2).
Origin of pea1
1275-1325; Middle English; back formation from pease, taken as plural
Related forms
pealike, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for green-pea
Historical Examples
  • Always buttin' in, buttin' in, buttin' in, fit for nothin' but the green-pea trade.

    Captain Scraggs Peter B. Kyne
  • The freebooter of the green-pea trade touched his wet forelock respectfully.

    Captain Scraggs Peter B. Kyne
  • Old Neils, "the squarehead" deckhand of the green-pea trade!

    Captain Scraggs Peter B. Kyne
  • Instead o' th' Island trade, I'm runnin' in th' green-pea trade, twenty miles of coast, freightin' garden truck!

    Captain Scraggs Peter B. Kyne
  • The fowls were just devouring the last of the green-pea shoots, and the potatoes had been blackened by our first frosts.

    Station Amusements Lady Barker
British Dictionary definitions for green-pea


an annual climbing leguminous plant, Pisum sativum, with small white flowers and long green pods containing edible green seeds: cultivated in temperate regions
  1. the seed of this plant, eaten as a vegetable
  2. (as modifier): pea soup
any of several other leguminous plants, such as the sweet pea, chickpea, and cowpea
Derived Forms
pealike, adjective
Word Origin
C17: from pease (incorrectly assumed to be a plural)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for green-pea



early or mid-17c., false singular from Middle English pease (plural pesen), which was both single and collective (e.g. wheat, corn) but the "s" sound was mistaken for the plural inflection. From Old English pise (West Saxon), piose (Mercian) "pea," from Late Latin pisa, variant of Latin pisum "pea," from Greek pison "the pea," perhaps of Thracian or Phrygian origin [Klein].

In Southern U.S. and the Caribbean, used of other legumes as well. Pea soup is first recorded 1711 (pease-soup); applied to London fogs since at least 1849. Pea-shooter attested from 1803.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for green-pea


Related Terms

sweet pea

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with green-pea
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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