a cultivated plant, Lactuca sativa, occurring in many varieties and having succulent leaves used for salads.
any species of Lactuca.
Slang. U.S. dollar bills; greenbacks.

1250–1300; 1925–30 for def 3; Middle English letuse, apparently < Old French laitues, plural of laitue < Latin lactūca a lettuce, perhaps derivative of lac, stem lact- milk, with termination as in erūca rocket2 (or by association with Greek galaktoûchos having milk)

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World English Dictionary
lettuce (ˈlɛtɪs)
1.  any of various plants of the genus Lactuca, esp L. sativa, which is cultivated in many varieties for its large edible leaves: family Asteraceae (composites)
2.  the leaves of any of these varieties, which are eaten in salads
3.  any of various plants that resemble true lettuce, such as lamb's lettuce and sea lettuce
[C13: probably from Old French laitues, pl of laitue, from Latin lactūca, from lac- milk, because of its milky juice]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

late 13c., from O.Fr. laitues, pl. of laitue, from L. lactuca "lettuce," from lac (gen. lactis) "milk" (see lactation); so called in allusion to the milky juice of the plant.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Growing your own salad greens trumps buying grocery lettuce any day.
The greenhouse begins its work by germinating seeds of four lettuce types and
  one basil variety in plastic bins.
In a large bowl, toss the lettuce with the dressing and the croutons.
Those who have tried to thaw frozen heads of lettuce know that the results are
  typically soggy and limp.
Images for lettuce
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