date

date

[deyt]
date, name for a palm (Phoenix dactylifera) and for its edible fruit. Probably native to Arabia and North Africa, it has from earliest times been a principal food in many desert and tropical regions. For some 4,000 years it has been grown near the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. It is cultivated in many other warm regions, including parts of the SW United States and Mexico.

The trees sometimes reach a height of 100 ft (30.5 m) and yield fruit for generations. Staminate (male) and pistillate (female) flowers are borne on separate trees, and pollination of those grown commercially is usually done by hand. Seedless dates may be produced without pollination but they are inferior. Heavy, pendant clusters of the sweet, nutritious fruits are produced; the yield after maturity (10 to 15 years) is usually from 100 to 200 lb (45-90 kg) or more per tree annually. Each fruit is 1 to 3 in. (2.54-7.6 cm) long, reddish brown or yellowish brown, and somewhat cylindrical or oblong. When ripe, the bunches of fruit are cut intact from the palm and matured in a warm place.

In the Old World, a sugar and a fermented drink are made from the sap of the date palm and other species of Phoenix, and the seeds are sometimes roasted and used as a coffee substitute or pressed for oil, leaving a residue useful for stock feed. The wood of the trunk is often used in construction and the leaves are used for weaving mats and baskets.

Dates are classified in the division Magnoliophyta, class Liliopsida, order Arecales, family Palmae.

Tree (Phoenix dactylifera) of the palm family, found in the Canary Islands and northern Africa, the Middle East, Pakistan, India, and California. The trunk, strongly marked with the pruned stubs of old leaf bases, ends in a crown of long, graceful, shining, pinnate leaves. The fruit, called the date, is a usually oblong brown berry. Dates have long been an important food in desert regions, and are the source of syrup, alcohol, vinegar, and a strong liquor. All parts of the tree yield products of economic value, being used variously for timber, furniture, basketry, fuel, rope, and packing material. The seeds are sometimes used as stock feed. The tree is grown as an ornamental along the Mediterranean shores of Europe. Its leaves are used for the celebration of Palm Sunday (among Christians) and the Feast of Tabernacles (among Jews). Date sugar, a product of India, is obtained from the sap of a closely related species, P. sylvestris.

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Date-time group (DTG): In a message, a set of characters, usually in a prescribed format, used to express the year, the month, the day of the month, the hour of the day, the minute of the hour and the time zone (if different from Zero zone or UTC+0). The order may vary, for example, 21:52 Feb 20, 2003 (UTC) . DTG used within military record traffic messages has traditionally used the format "271545Z FEB 08" to represent 1545 hours (ZULU or UTC), on the 27th of February 2008. Note 1: The DTG is usually placed in the header of the message.

Note 2: The DTG may be used as a message identifier if it is unique for each message.

Note 3: The DTG may indicate either the date and time a message was dispatched by a transmitting station or the date and time it was handed into a transmission facility by a user or originator for dispatch.

See also Calendar date, ISO 8601 in Internet standards.

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