Agave

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Agave in classical mythology, the daughter of Cadmus and Harmonia and mother of Pentheus. In Euripides' The Bacchae, she refuses to acknowledge the divinity of Dionysus, and as punishment is driven mad as a bacchant; in their frenzy, she and her companions tear Pentheus apart.

The name Agave comes from the Greek word agauos ‘illustrious’.

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Agave (family Agavaceae) A genus of rosette plants that produce, after many years, a terminal inflorescence and then die. A. americana (the century plant) provides the Mexican beverage pulque, and its juice may be distilled to produce mescal. Several Agave species provide fibres (e.g. sisal hemp and istle fibre). There are about 300 species, found in subtropical and tropical parts of arid America.

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agave Succulent, flowering plant found in tropical, subtropical and temperate regions. Agaves have narrow, lance-shaped leaves clustered at the base of the plant, and many have large flower clusters. The flower of the well-known century plant (Agave americana) of sw North America grows up to 7.6m (25ft) in one season. The century plant was thought to flower only once in 100 years, but in fact it flowers every 20 to 30 years. Other species are sisal (A. sisalana) and mescal (Lophophora williamsii), whose fermented sap forms the basis of the alcoholic drink tequila. Family Agavaceae.

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a·ga·ve / əˈgävē/ • n. a succulent plant (genus Agave, family Agavaceae) with rosettes of narrow spiny leaves and tall flower spikes, native to the southern US and tropical America.