1. A mat-forming, evergreen shrub (Vaccinium macrocarpon) in the heath family, native to eastern North America and widely cultivated for its tart, red, edible berries.
2. The berries of this plant, used in sauces, jellies, relishes, and beverages.
3. Any of several other plants in the genus Vaccinium having red berries, especially V. oxycoccos.
[Partial translation of Low German Kraansbere, Kraanbere, any of several European cranberry species, literally "crane-berry" (probably from the resemblance of the flower of the European species Vaccinium oxycoccus to the head and neck of a crane) : Kraan, crane (from Middle Low German kran; see gerə-2 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots) + bere, berry.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2017 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The American Heritage Dictionary Blog
Check out our blog, updated regularly, for new words and revised definitions, interesting images from the 5th edition, discussions of usage, and more.
American Heritage Dictionary Products
The American Heritage Dictionary, 5th Edition
The American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms
The American Heritage Roget's Thesaurus
Curious George's Dictionary
The American Heritage Children's Dictionary
The American Heritage Dictionary of Indo-European Roots
The American Heritage Student Grammar Dictionary
The American Heritage Desk Dictionary + Thesaurus
The American Heritage Science Dictionary
The American Heritage Dictionary of Business Terms
The American Heritage Student Dictionary
The American Heritage Essential Student Thesaurus