(Science: botany) The kernel of the fruit of the nutmeg tree (myristica fragrans), a native of the Molucca islands, but cultivated elsewhere in the tropics.
This fruit is a nearly spherical drupe, of the size of a pear, of a yellowish colour without and almost white within. This opens into two nearly equal longitudinal valves, inclosing the nut surrounded by its aril, which is mace The nutmeg is an aromatic, very grateful to the taste and smell, and much used in cookery. Other species of myristica yield nutmegs of inferior quality. American, Calabash, or jamaica, nutmeg, the fruit of a tropical shrub (Monodora Myristica). It is about the size of an orange, and contains many aromatic seeds imbedded in pulp. Brazilian nutmeg, the fruit of a lauraceous tree, Cryptocarya moschata. California nutmeg, tree of the yew family (Torreya Californica), growing in the western united states, and having a seed which resembles a nutmeg in appearance, but is strongly impregnated with turpentine. Clove nutmeg, the Ravensara aromatica, a laura ceous tree of madagascar. The foliage is used as a spice, but the seed is acrid and caustic. Jamaica nutmeg. See American nutmeg (above).
(Science: zoology) Nutmeg bird, an indian finch (Munia punctularia). Nutmeg butter, a solid oil ex
tracted from the nutmeg by expression.
(Science: botany) Nutmeg flower, a spicy tree of australia (Atherosperma moschata).
Origin: OE. Notemuge; note nut – OF. Muge musk, of the same origin as E. Musk; cf. OF. Noix muguette nutmeg, F. Noix muscade. See Nut, and Musk.