Fig

Fig

Figure; dress; array. Were they all in full fig, the females with feathers on their heads, the males with chapeaux bras? (Prof. Wilson)

1. (Science: botany) a small fruit tree (ficus carica) with large leaves, known from the remotest antiquity. It was probably native from Syria westward to the Canary islands.

2. The fruit of a fig tree, which is of round or oblong shape, and of various colours.

The fruit of a fig tree is really the hollow end of a stem, and bears numerous achenia inside the cavity. Many species have little, hard, inedible figs, and in only a few does the fruit become soft and pulpy. The fruit of the cultivated varieties is much prized in its fresh state, and also when dried or preserved. See Caprification.

3. A small piece of tobacco.

4. The value of a fig, practically nothing; a fico; used in scorn or contempt. A fig for peter. cochineal fig. See Conchineal fig. Fig dust, a preparation of fine oatmeal for feeding caged birds. Fig faun, one of a class of rural deities or monsters supposed to live on figs. Therefore shall dragons dwell there with the fig fauns.

(Science: zoology) fig gnat, a small fly said to be injurious to figs. Fig leaf, the leaf tree; hence, in allusion to the first clothing of adam and eve (genesis III.7), a covering for a thing that ought to be concealed; especially, an inadequate covering; a symbol for affected modesty.

(Science: botany) fig marigold, any tree of the genus ficus, but especially f. Carica which produces the fig of commerce.

Origin: f. Figue the fruit of the tree, pr. Figa, fr. L. Ficus fig tree, fig. Cf. Fico.

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