Definition of barberry in English:


Syllabification: bar·ber·ry
Pronunciation: /ˈbärˌberē, -bərē

noun (plural barberries)

  • A thorny shrub that bears yellow flowers and red or blue-black berries.
    • Genus Berberis, family Berberidaceae: many species, including the American barberry (B. canadensis), with widely toothed leaves, and the European barberry (B. vulgaris), with more closely toothed leaves
    More example sentences
    • They are also attracted by the berries on the holly and some of the dogwoods and barberries around the yard, as well as the flowers with seedpods that I left for them in the main garden.
    • Swirling robins and starlings competed for the red berries of the barberry and the blue berries of the privet.
    • The barberry bushes have bright red little berries for all the world like Redhot candies.


late Middle English: from Old French berberis. The change in the ending was due to association with berry.

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