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rice (n.)

mid-13c., ris, "edible seeds or grains of the rice plant, one of the world's major food grains," from Old French ris, from Italian riso, from Latin oriza, from Greek oryza "rice," via an Indo-Iranian language (compare Pashto vriže, Old Persian brizi), ultimately from Sanskrit vrihi-s "rice."

The Greek word, directly or in indirectly, is the source of the European words for the grain (Welsh reis, German reis, Lithuanian ryžiai, Serbo-Croatian riza, Polish ryż, etc.). Evidence of semi-cultivated rice in Thailand dates to 5,500 years ago; introduced to the Mediterranean by the Arabs, it was introduced 1647 in the Carolinas.

Rice paper (1810), originally used in China, Japan, etc., is made from straw of rice; the name is sometimes misapplied to a delicate white film prepared from the pith of a certain East Asian shrub. Rice-pudding is by 1889. Rice Krispies is from 1936.

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Definitions of rice from WordNet
1
rice (n.)
grains used as food either unpolished or more often polished;
rice (n.)
annual or perennial rhizomatous marsh grasses; seed used for food; straw used for paper;
2
rice (v.)
sieve so that it becomes the consistency of rice;
rice the potatoes
3
Rice (n.)
English lyricist who frequently worked with Andrew Lloyd Webber (born in 1944);
Synonyms: Sir Tim Rice / Timothy Miles Bindon Rice
Rice (n.)
United States playwright (1892-1967);
Synonyms: Elmer Rice / Elmer Leopold Rice / Elmer Reizenstein
From wordnet.princeton.edu