Definitions

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

  • transitive v. To take up and hold, as by absorption or adsorption.
  • n. Any of several Old World trees of the genus Sorbus in the rose family, as the service tree or the rowan.
  • n. The fruit of any of these plants.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The wild service tree (Pyrus torminalis) of Europe.
  • n. The rowan tree.
  • n. The fruit of either of these trees.
  • v. To absorb or adsorb.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The wild service tree (Pyrus torminalis) of Europe; also, the rowan tree.
  • n. The fruit of these trees.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The service-tree, Pyrus (Sorbus) domestica.
  • n. The fruit of any of the above-named trees.
  • n. A member of a Slavic race resident in Saxony and adjoining parts of Prussia. Also called Wend, or Lusatian Wend.

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

  • v. take up a liquid or a gas either by adsorption or by absorption
  • n. acid gritty-textured fruit

Etymologies

Back-formation from absorb and adsorb.
French sorbe, sorb fruit, from Old French sourbe, from Vulgar Latin *sorba, from Latin sorbum.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin sorbus the tree, sorbum the fruit; compare French sorbe. See service tree. (Wiktionary)

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