Definition of aubergine in US English:



  • 1The purple egg-shaped fruit of a tropical Old World plant, which is eaten as a vegetable; an eggplant.

    • ‘A variety of organic vegetables is grown under glass at the site, including aubergines, courgettes, peppers, lettuce, runner beans, peas and pumpkins.’
    • ‘Grill the aubergines, fennel, courgettes, and peppers, a few at a time, brushing with plenty of olive oil and seasoning on both sides until well coloured and tender.’
    • ‘The vegetables - aubergine, pepper, mushroom and onion - were slightly spicy, and served still warm.’
    • ‘Heat a large frying pan or wok and then fry off the vegetables in turn, aubergines first then peppers then courgettes.’
    • ‘Combine the aubergine, pepper and courgettes and spread over the potatoes.’
    • ‘Although the ground remains too hard to sow direct, meaning the parsnips still aren't in, the aubergines were sown yesterday in soil blocks in the greenhouse.’
    • ‘Peel the charred skin off the peppers, aubergines and onions.’
    • ‘Lift out the aubergine, tomato and some of the onion with a draining spoon.’
    • ‘Even the chargrilled vegetables - which included courgettes, aubergines and sweet peppers - were excellent.’
    • ‘Slice the aubergines crosswise, brush with a little extra olive oil and grill on both sides until well marked.’
    • ‘Served warm, the big, fat, juicy peppers, courgettes and aubergines had a breath of garlic and were consumed with great gusto.’
    • ‘Remove the leaves from the top of the aubergine then cut the fruit into four lengthways.’
    • ‘Halve the tomatoes, again lengthways, and cut the aubergine into short, thick chunks then add them to the potatoes.’
    • ‘Since the resort began supporting local enterprises, many of the people have started growing new crops like courgettes, aubergines and peppers.’
    • ‘This was a large portion of delicious aubergines, courgettes and peppers, roasted and served in a tasty marinade.’
    • ‘Just then, my next course arrives; it turns out to be a stuffed aubergine pie with layers of wild mushroom.’
    • ‘Cut the aubergine and courgettes into neat 1.5cm cubes or diamonds with skins on, for the colour.’
    • ‘It will surprise no one to hear that the aubergine is my favourite vegetable.’
    • ‘This is a lovely way of doing a variety of fried vegetables, like aubergines, courgettes, pumpkin, spinach and squash.’
    • ‘He also grows grapes, tomatoes, aubergines, peppers, squash, sage, thyme, rosemary and bay.’
    1. 1.1 A dark purple color like the skin of an eggplant.
      • ‘Colour predictions included lime green, with smatterings of orange for the retro fans and for more opulent effects, aubergine, brown and maroon.’
      • ‘‘Vogue’ has declared aubergine the colour of the season and everyone has been much relieved by the disappearance of pink.’
      • ‘Dark berry colours will also be very popular; plum, aubergine, dark raspberry and even chocolate colours.’
      • ‘The entire outside of the building is lit up every night in a disturbingly bright shade of aubergine.’
      • ‘The 1970s continued some of these tones to begin with, but as the decade progressed these moved toward earthier and softer more wistful tones such as aubergine and rust.’
      • ‘Some of them are quite distinctive colours like aubergine and black and white.’
      • ‘‘I'm not wearing anything aubergine,’ I said to him.’
      • ‘How many of us have contemplated painting a room deep aubergine or rich ocean blue, only to bail out at the last minute and settle on an uninspired but ultimately safe shade of cream?’
      • ‘The new fabric, which is going into bedding and draperies, is selling in gold, bronze and aubergine.’
      • ‘The walls are painted a dark aubergine and rusty orange - not two colours I'd put together.’
      • ‘It's almost aubergine in shade and, with the bed against it, is going to look fabulous.’
      • ‘Kenneth Cole's winter collection offers a wide variety of leather coats, in black and aubergine.’
      • ‘I call it purple, but I have been told, firmly, that it's aubergine.’
      • ‘The purples are appearing in a soft, subtle vein in all casts from pale lavender to deep aubergine.’
      • ‘For eyes, try intense pigments such as deep aubergine, navy blue, black, darkest charcoal or even copper, followed by mascara.’
  • 2The large plant of the nightshade family that bears eggplants.

    Solanum melongena, family Solanaceae

    • ‘With long stretches of hot, dry weather they have really multiplied, ravaging my fig tree and runner beans and completely destroying three aubergine plants just as they began to flower.’
    • ‘The capsicums are a genus of the family Solanaceae, and are therefore related to the New World tomato and potato, and, in the Old World, to the aubergine and deadly nightshade.’


Late 18th century: from French, from Catalan alberginia, from Arabic al-bāḏinjān (based on Persian bādingān, from Sanskrit vātiṃgaṇa).