A tree of the genus Mespilus (M. Germanica); also, the fruit of the tree. The fruit is something like a small apple, but has a bony endocarp. When first gathered the flesh is hard and austere, and it is not eaten until it has begun to decay.

<botany> Japan medlar, a kind of thorn tree (Crataegus Azarolus); also, its fruit.

Origin: OE. Medler medlar tree, OF. Meslier, F. Neflier, L. Mespilum, mespilus, Gr, . Cf. Naseberry.

(01 Mar 1998)