Martha Stewart Living Radio: The Radio Blog

Word of the Day: crop

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Crop is the harvest of a type plant, grouping its many varieties as a unit. But originally crop referred to a bird’s craw -- its stomach, where it stores food for its offspring. At the same time, crop was the top part of a plant: the part picked for use. That’s no longer true, but it explains how crop evolved into its current use. It also explains why Scottish English calls the top of a fishing rod a crop. Just as the crop was the useful part of a plant, it was once the tanned part of an animal’s hide-- and, by extension, a piece cut off anything. This sort of explains outcropping, which is anything that rises above
the surface. Today that crop is more common with digital pictures.

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