from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A small grocery store, sometimes combined with a wineshop, in certain Hispanic communities.
  • n. A warehouse for the storage of wine.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Storehouse for maturing wine
  • n. Store specializing in Hispanic groceries
  • n. a convenience store

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A wine-cellar, or a shop where wine is sold from the wood; a wine-vault.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a small Hispanic shop selling wine and groceries


Spanish, from Latin apothēca, storehouse; see apothecary.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Spanish, from Latin apotheca ("storehouse"), from Ancient Greek ἀποθήκη (apotheke, "storehouse") (Wiktionary)


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  • I rarely feel genteel, but this is cool anyway.

    October 5, 2008

  • The Spanish "bodega" is derived from Latin "apotheca," by dropping the initial syllable and "softening" the remaining sounds:

    bo'de'ga < -- > po'the'ca

    Thus, if you want to feel particularly genteel or old world, refer to your local bodega as the "apothecary."

    October 5, 2008