Harvest: Wikis


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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Woman manually harvesting grain in Thirumayam, India. This custom was the norm until the Industrial Revolution, with the introduction of mechanical equipment.

In agriculture, the harvest is the processes of gathering mature crops from the fields. Reaping is the cutting of grain or pulse for harvest, typically using a scythe, sickle, or reaper.[1] The harvest marks the end of the growing season, or the growing cycle for a particular crop, and this is the focus of seasonal celebrations of many religions. On smaller farms with minimal mechanization, harvesting is the most labor-intensive activity of the growing season. On large, mechanized farms, harvesting utilizes the most expensive and sophisticated farm machinery, like the combine harvester. Harvesting in general usage includes an immediate post-harvest handling, all of the actions taken immediately after removing the crop—cooling, sorting, cleaning, packing—up to the point of further on-farm processing, or shipping to the wholesale or consumer market.


Important factors

Harvest timing is a critical decision, that balances the likely weather conditions with the degree of crop maturity. Weather conditions such as frost, rain (resulting in a "wet harvest"),[2] and unseasonably warm or cold periods can affect yield and quality. An earlier harvest date may avoid damaging conditions, but result in poorer yield and quality. Delaying harvest may result in a better harvest, but increases the risk of weather problems. Timing of the harvest often amounts to a significant gamble.


Australians harvest the wheat circa 1900

Before the 16th century, harvest was the term usually used to refer to the Autumn season: in fact the word comes from old English hærfest, which meant Autumn (the German word Herbst has the same origin and still means Autumn). The word is a compound word (hær + fest) and its first part has Indo-European roots in *kerp meaning to gather, pluck, harvest. Compare it with the Latin verb carpere meaning to cut, divide, pluck (Carpe diem). So hærfest indicated originally the joyful celebration of finally being possible to gather the mature crops; it extended afterwards its meaning to the all period beginning with the harvest (autumn). Recall also the expression harvest moon which is recorded since 1706 and indicates the full moon within a fortnight of the autumnal equinox (21 of September). However, as more people gradually moved from working the land to living in towns (especially those who were literate), the word came to refer to the actual activity of reaping, rather than the time of year, and the terms Fall and Autumn began to replace it in the former sense. [3]

Other uses

The word harvest commonly refers to grain and produce, but also has other uses. In addition to fish and timber, the term harvest is also used in reference to harvesting grapes for wine. Within the context of irrigation, water harvesting refers to the collection and run-off of rainwater for agricultural or domestic uses. Energy harvesting is the process by which energy (such as solar power, thermal energy, wind energy, salinity gradients and kinetic energy) is captured and stored. Body harvesting, or cadaver harvesting, is the process of collecting and preparing cadavers for anatomical study. In a similar sense, organ harvesting is the removal of tissues or organs from a donor for purposes of transplanting.

See also


  1. ^ American Heritage Dictionary (4th ed. ed.). Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co. 2000. ISBN 0618082301.  
  2. ^ Alpha-Amylase Activity of Varieties of English Wheat
  3. ^ Please see also etymological dictionaries like Harper’s

Source material

Up to date as of January 22, 2010

From Wikisource

by Lydia Sigourney
Information about this edition
Printed in Cheshire Pastoral Association. Christian Hymns for Public and Private Worship. A Collection Compiled by a Committee of the Cheshire Pastoral Association. Fifty-first ed. Boston: Crosby, Nichols, and Co., 1859. Copyright 1844. Pages 411-412.

1 GOD of the year! with songs of praise
  And hearts of love, we come to bless
  Thy bounteous hand, for thou hast shed
  Thy manna o'er our wilderness.

2 In early spring-time thou didst fling
  O'er earth its robe of blossoming;
  And its sweet treasures, day by day,
  Rose quickening in thy blesséd ray.

3 God of the seasons! thou hast blest
  The land with sunlight and with showers,
  And plenty o'er its bosom smiles,
  To crown the sweet autumnal hours.

4 Praise,—praise to thee! Our hearts expand
  To view these blessings of thy hand,
  And on the incense-breath of love
  Ascend to their bright home above.

PD-icon.svg This work published before January 1, 1923 is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

'HARVEST (A.S.' /tartest " autumn," O.H. Ger. herbist, possibly through an old Teutonic root representing Lat. carpere, " to pluck"), the season of the ingathering of crops. Harvest has been a season of rejoicing from the remotest ages. The ancient Jews celebrated the Feast of Pentecost as their harvest festival, the wheat ripening earlier in Palestine. The Romans had their Cerealia or feasts in honour of Ceres. The Druids celebrated their harvest on the 1st of November. In pre-reformation England Lammas Day (Aug. 1st, O.S.) was observed at the beginning of the harvest festival, every member of the church presenting a loaf made of new wheat. Throughout the world harvest has always been the occasion for many queer customs which all have their origin in the animistic belief in the CornSpirit or Corn-Mother. This personification of the crops has left its impress upon the harvest customs of modern Europe. In west Russia, for example, the figure made out of the last sheaf of corn is called the Bastard, and a boy is wrapped up in it. The woman who binds this sheaf represents the "Cornmother," and an elaborate simulation of childbirth takes place, the boy in the sheaf squalling like a new-born child, and being, on his liberation, wrapped in swaddling bands. Even in England vestiges of sympathetic magic can be detected. In Northumberland, where the harvest rejoicing takes place at the close of the reaping and not at the ingathering, as soon as the last sheaf is set on end the reapers shout that they have "got the kern." An image formed of a wheatsheaf, and dressed in a white frock and coloured ribbons, is hoisted on a pole. This is the "kern-baby" or harvest-queen, and it is carried back in triumph with music and shouting and set up in a prominent place during the harvest supper. In Scotland the last sheaf if cut before Hallowmas is called the "maiden," and the youngest girl in the harvest-field is given the privilege of cutting it. If the reaping finishes after Hallowmas the last corn cut is called the Cailleach (old woman). In some parts of Scotland this last sheaf is kept till Christmas morning and then divided among the cattle "to make them thrive all the. year round," or is kept till the first mare foals and is then given to her as her first food. Throughout the world, as J. G. Frazer shows, the semi-worship of the last sheaf is or has been the great feature of the harvest-home. Among harvest customs none is more interesting than harvest cries. The cry of the Egyptian reapers announcing the death of the corn-spirit, the rustic prototype of Osiris, has found its echo on the world's harvest-fields, and to this day, to take an English example, the Devonshire reapers utter cries of the same sort and go through a ceremony which in its main features is an exact counterpart of pagan worship. "After the wheat is cut they ` cry the neck.' ... An old man goes round to the shocks and picks out a bundle of the best ears he can find... this bundle is called ` the neck'; the harvest hands then stand round in a ring, the old man holding ` the neck ' in the centre. At a signal from him they take off their hats, stooping and holding them with both hands towards the ground. Then all together they utter in a prolonged cry ` the neck! ' three times, raising themselves upright with their hats held above their heads. Then they change their cry to ` Wee yen! way yen! ' or, as some report, ` we haven!'" On a fine still autumn evening "crying the neck" has a wonderful effect at a distance. In East Anglia there still survives the custom known as "Hallering Largess." The harvesters beg largess from passers, and when they have received money they shout thrice "Halloo, largess," having first formed a circle, bowed their heads low crying "Hoo-Hoo-Hoo," and then jerked their heads backwards and uttered a shrill shriek of "Ah ! Ah !" For a very full discussion of harvest customs see J. G. Frazer, The Golden Bough, and Brand's Antiquities of Great Britain (Hazlitt's edit., 1905).

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Up to date as of January 15, 2010
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Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary




Middle English hervest, from Old English hærfest; cognate with Latin carpere 'to seize', Greek (karpos) 'fruit' and (keirein) 'to cut'.





harvest (plural harvests)

  1. The process of harvesting, gathering the ripened crop.
  2. The yield of harvesting, i.e. the gathered, cut ... fruits of horti- or agri-culture (usually a food - or industrial crop)
    This year's cotton harvest was great but the corn harvest disastrous
  3. (by extension) The product or result of any exertion or labor; gain; reward.
  4. (paganism) A modern pagan ceremony held on or around the autumn equinox, which is in the harvesting season.


  • (horti- or agricultural yield) crop


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.


to harvest

Third person singular

Simple past

Past participle

Present participle

to harvest (third-person singular simple present harvests, present participle harvesting, simple past and past participle harvested)

  1. (transitive) To bring in a harvest; reap; glean.
  2. (intransitive) To be occupied bringing in a harvest
    Harvesting is a stressing, thirsty occupation
  3. (transitive) To win, achieve a gain.
    The rising star harvested well-deserved acclaim, even an Oscar under 21


Derived terms

Bible wiki

Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From BibleWiki

the season for gathering grain or fruit. On the 16th day of Abib (or April) a handful of ripe ears of corn was offered as a first-fruit before the Lord, and immediately after this the harvest commenced (Lev 23:9-14; 2 Sam 21:9, 10; Ruth 2:23). It began with the feast of Passover and ended with Pentecost, thus lasting for seven weeks (Ex 23:16). The harvest was a season of joy (Ps 1261-6; Isa 9:3). This word is used figuratively Mt 9:37; 13:30; Lk 10:2; Jn 4:35. (See AGRICULTURE.)

This entry includes text from Easton's Bible Dictionary, 1897.

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This article needs to be merged with HARVEST (Jewish Encyclopedia).

Simple English


Harvest means to collect what has been planted and grown in the ground. It is usually done by farmers, and in the fall season. This is also called picking crops.

Simple English Wiktionary has the word meaning for:

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