• WordNet 3.6
    • n vetch any of various climbing plants of the genus Vicia having pinnately compound leaves that terminate in tendrils and small variously colored flowers; includes valuable forage and soil-building plants
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Vetch vĕch (Bot) Any leguminous plant of the genus Vicia, some species of which are valuable for fodder. The common species is Vicia sativa.☞ The name is also applied to many other leguminous plants of different genera; as the chichling vetch, of the genus Lathyrus; the horse vetch, of the genus Hippocrepis; the kidney vetch (Anthyllis vulneraria); the milk vetch, of the genus Astragalus; the licorice vetch, or wild licorice (Abrus precatorius).
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n vetch A plant of the genus Vicia; the tare. The species are mostly climbing herbs of moderate height; many of them are useful as wild or cultivated forage-plants. The common vetch, the species most largely cultivated, is V. sativa. (See tare.) V. peregrina and V. cordata are annuals grown in Italy; and V.(Ervum) Ervilia of the Mediterranean region, known as black bitter-vetch, is grown as a forage-plant on calcareous soils. V. tetrasperma, the lentil tare, is said to be better than the common vetch for sandy ground, and V.hirsuta, the tare-vetch, and V. calcarata approach it in value. The wood-vetch, V. sylvatica, the bushvetch, V. sepium, and the tufted vetch, V. Cracca, are perennials useful in pastures. The common bean of Europe is of the vetch genus, V. Faba. (See bean.) The name is extended to some kindred plants of other genera.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Vetch vech a genus of plants, mostly climbing, some cultivated for fodder, esp. the tare
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Also fitch,; OE. ficche, feche, for veche, OF. veche, vecce, vesche, vesce, F. vesce, fr. L. vicia,
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
O.Fr. veche (Fr. vesce)—L. vicia, akin to vincīre, to bind.


In literature:

But the true winter-vetch is what we want extremely.
"Memoir, Correspondence, And Miscellanies, From The Papers Of Thomas Jefferson" by Thomas Jefferson
The puppet had never in his life been able to eat vetch: according to him it made him sick.
"Pinocchio" by C. Collodi
Vicia sylvatica (Wood Vetch) .
"Handbook to the Severn Valley Railway Illustrative and Descriptive of Places along the Line from Worcester to Shrewsbury" by J. Randall
Consequently this superb vetch is in general able to nourish without much loss the family confided to its pod.
"Social Life in the Insect World" by J. H. Fabre
Vetch and clover and all else that permanently enriched must be given up for war gardening or war farming.
"Modern American Prose Selections" by Various
For pasture, crimson clover is sometimes sown with rape, winter rye, winter oats, the common vetch or the sand vetch.
"Clovers and How to Grow Them" by Thomas Shaw
The members of the vetche were elected by a unanimous vote, instead of by a majority.
"The Story of Russia" by R. Van Bergen
The servile tribe of Hagheri live in reed huts; we saw them threshing gilgil and vetch.
"Southern Arabia" by Theodore Bent
He was the youngest son of Mr. John Vetch, who was minister of that place for about the space of 45 years.
"Biographia Scoticana (Scots Worthies)" by John Howie
Some are buried by the parent plants, as those of certain clovers, vetches, violets, etc.
"The Beauties of Nature" by Sir John Lubbock
Vetch Blue, purple Thickets; New England.
"Harper's Young People, July 13, 1880" by Various
You tell un I be come to vetch it.
"Amaryllis at the Fair" by Richard Jefferies
Travis, remembering what vetching meant to these people, gathered his forces.
"Conquest Over Time" by Michael Shaara
Being a vetch it is subject to tithe.
"Notes on Agriculture in Cyprus and Its Products" by William Bevan
To a less extent vetches are grown for the same purpose.
"Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 9, Slice 1" by Various
Their emissary to England was Samuel Vetch, a notable man of the time in North American history.
"A Historical Geography of the British Colonies" by Charles Prestwood Lucas
Vetch, after much search, finds a handful of berries, and adds them to the main stock.
"Library of the World's Best Literature, Ancient and Modern, Vol. 9" by Various
Another piece Mr. WINNAL transplanted after vetches.
"Rural Rides" by William Cobbett
There is no better hay than oats and vetch cut in the dough stage.
"How to Prosper in Boll Weevil Territory" by G. H. Alford
Lentils are really a species of tare or vetch.
"A Course of Lectures on the Principles of Domestic Economy and Cookery" by Juliet Corson

In poetry:

The sainfoin and the purple vetch
Nodding above our lair
Sighed on the western breeze, whose might
Could barely stir our hair.
"On Reading Ballads" by Arthur Graeme West
From arch and alley sodden wretches
Crept out in half attire,
And groped for fetid husks and vetches
In heaps of tossed—out mire;
"Two Visions" by Alfred Austin
"How lean my bull amid the fattening vetch!
Alack! alack! for herdsman and for herd!
It is the self-same love that wastes us both."
"Eclogue 3: Menalcas Daemoetas Palaemon" by Publius Vergilius Maro
"How lean my bull amid the fattening vetch!
Alack! alack! for herdsman and for herd!
It is the self-same love that wastes us both."
"Eclogue III " by Virgil
An' she, at mornèn an' at night,
Do skim the yollow cream, an' mwold
An' wring her cheeses red an' white,
An' zee the butter vetch'd an' roll'd.
"The Milk-Maid O’ The Farm" by William Barnes
The clambering vetch, and the meadow—sweet tall,
That nodded good—day as you sauntered past,
And the poppy flaunting atop of the wall,
Which, proud as glory, will fade as fast.
"A Country Nosegay" by Alfred Austin

In news:

Birch trees and bird vetch prompt slew of questions in Interior Alaska.
The first winterhardy, early flowering vetch variety for the northern US has been released by the USDA-Agricultural Research Service (ARS).
Vetch is a cover crop and weed-suppressing mulch favored particularly by organic farmers.