Definition of vegetal in English:



  • 1formal Relating to plants:

    ‘a vegetal aroma’
    • ‘Meanwhile, the surface of Mars was hot enough and contained enough carbon dioxide to sustain basic vegetal life such as lichen.’
    • ‘In addition, there are unpleasant, though mild, vegetal aromas present.’
    • ‘Analysis of pollens found in excavations suggest that the earliest vegetal species to be cultivated were pulses - wild peas, lentils, and chick peas.’
    • ‘But there is a rich, firm finish, with a slight vegetal character, which makes for a sophisticated and complex wine.’
    • ‘Wearing masks made of wood, cloth, or vegetal fiber, performers dance in honor of the spirit forces of the particular body of water that runs through their community.’
  • 2Embryology
    [attributive] Relating to that pole of the ovum or embryo that contains the less active cytoplasm, and frequently most of the yolk, in the early stages of development:

    ‘vegetal cells’
    ‘the vegetal region’
    • ‘When embryos are exposed to UV irradiation on the vegetal hemisphere they are completely ventralized and form no dorsal structures.’
    • ‘The vegetal yolk cell specifies the position of the shield.’


Late Middle English: from medieval Latin vegetalis, from Latin vegetare animate. vegetal dates from the early 20th century.