Etymology
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soy (n.)

1670s, saio "soybean-based Asian fish sauce," from Dutch soya, from Japanese soyu, variant of shoyu "soy," from Chinese shi-yu, from shi "fermented soy beans" + yu "oil." Etymology reflects Dutch presence in Japan before English and American merchants began to trade there.

updated on October 25, 2013

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Definitions of soy from WordNet

soy (n.)
a source of oil; used for forage and soil improvement and as food;
Synonyms: soybean / soya bean
soy (n.)
erect bushy hairy annual herb having trifoliate leaves and purple to pink flowers; extensively cultivated for food and forage and soil improvement but especially for its nutritious oil-rich seeds; native to Asia;
Synonyms: soya / soybean / soya bean / soybean plant / soja / soja bean / Glycine max
soy (n.)
thin sauce made of fermented soy beans;
Synonyms: soy sauce
soy (n.)
the most highly proteinaceous vegetable known; the fruit of the soybean plant is used in a variety of foods and as fodder (especially as a replacement for animal protein);
Synonyms: soybean / soya / soya bean
Etymologies are not definitions. From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.