(Sp. model spelled same [mayéi], of Taino origin)
   1) DARE: 1830. Another name for the agave plant. Both Blevins and Hendrick-son reference agave, Hendrickson noting that the term derives from the name of "the daughter of the legendary Cadmus who introduced the Greek alphabet." While many species make up the Agave genus, the most remarkable one is the so-called century plant (A. americana). According to legend, the plant earned its name because it only blooms once every one hundred years. However, it actually blooms any time after fifteen years, usually in twenty to thirty years. Both Blevins and Hendrickson state that the plant dies after blooming, but no Spanish source reaffirms this. According to the DRAE and Blevins, it is originally from Mexico (although introduced into Europe in the sixteenth century and naturalized on the Mediterranean coast). The agave, maguey, or century plant is a light green succulent with fleshy leaves and yellowish blooms. The leaves are similar in arrangement to a triangular pyramid or a rosette; the edges as well as the tips of the leaves are covered with sharp spines, and the plant may grow up to some twenty to twenty-three feet in height. This particular plant and related species are used as hedges or fences in dry, hot areas and they produce fiber (thread), alcoholic beverages (mescal, tequila and pulque), soaps, and foodstuffs. In Mexico, the term maguey is used much more frequently to refer to these same plants. The DARE notes that this name is limited to the Southwest and the Gulf states.
   Also known as amole, century plant, lechuguilla, mescal.
   2) New Mexico: 1899. A rope, such as a lasso, made from the fibers of a maguey plant. Santamaría and the DRAE concur with the first definition, but no Spanish source glosses the term as a kind of rope.
   Alternate forms: maguay, McGay (the latter is a folk etymology).

Cowboy Talk. A Dictionary of Spanish Terms. . 2013.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • maguey — ● maguey nom masculin Agave du Mexique dont une espèce donne une sève sucrée (miel de maguey) dont on tire, par fermentation, le pulque. ⇒MAGUEY, subst. masc. Agave de Cuba et du Mexique, dont la sève donne après évaporation le miel de Maguey et… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Maguey — Mag uey, n. [Sp. maguey, Mexican maguei and metl.] (Bot.) Any of several species of {Agave}, such as the {century plant} ({Agave Americana}), a plant requiring many years to come to maturity and blossoming only once before dying; and the {Agave… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Maguey — Maguey, s. Agave …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • maguey — En algunos países americanos, ‘planta vivaz oriunda de México’. Su plural es magueyes (→ plural, 1d) …   Diccionario panhispánico de dudas

  • maguey — (n.) agave, 1550s, from Spanish, from Taino, a native Haitian language …   Etymology dictionary

  • maguey — sustantivo masculino 1. Pita …   Diccionario Salamanca de la Lengua Española

  • maguey — (Voz antillana). m. Am. pita (ǁ planta amarilidácea) …   Diccionario de la lengua española

  • maguey — [mag′wā΄; ] Sp [ mä ge′ē] n. [Sp < Taino] 1. any of a number of fleshy leaved, fiber yielding agaves of the SW U.S., Mexico, and Central America; esp., the century plant and species used in making rope, pulque, and tequila 2. any of several… …   English World dictionary

  • maguey — (Del taíno de las Grandes Antillas.) ► sustantivo masculino América BOTÁNICA Planta crasa de gran tamaño, con hojas grandes acabadas en punta y con flores amarillentas, que tiene un tallo que puede alcanzar los 10 metros; de sus hojas se extrae… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • maguey — s m Planta perteneciente a la familia de las amarilidáceas y al género Agave, de muy diversas especies; es de tallo corto, hojas gruesas y carnosas en forma de lanza, terminadas en una punta muy dura y provistas de espinas en forma de gancho en… …   Español en México

  • maguey — {{#}}{{LM M24497}}{{〓}} {{SynM42471}} {{[}}maguey{{]}} ‹ma·guey› {{◆}}(pl. magueyes){{◇}} {{《}}▍ s.m.{{》}} {{♂}}En zonas del español meridional,{{♀}} pita: • La fibra del maguey se utiliza para hacer cuerdas.{{○}} {{#}}{{LM SynM42471}}{{〓}}… …   Diccionario de uso del español actual con sinónimos y antónimos

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