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Squash (plant)

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Yellow squash
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Cucurbitales
Family: Cucurbitaceae
Genus: Cucurbita

Squashes are a kind of vegetable-like fruit. They originally came from the New World. Gourds are in the same family as squashes. Pumpkins and courgette are types of squashes.

Word origin

The English word "squash" comes from askutasquash (which means "a green thing eaten raw"). This is a word from the Narragansett language, which was documented by Roger Williams in his 1643 publication A Key Into the Language of America. There are similar words for squash in related languages of the Algonquian family such as Massachusett.

Squash and art

The squash has been an important crop in the Andes mountains since the pre-Columbian Era. The Moche culture from Northern Peru made ceramics from earth, water, and fire. This pottery was used to represent important themes. Squash are a popular shape in Moche ceramics.[1]



  1. Berrin, Katherine & Larco Museum. The Spirit of Ancient Peru:Treasures from the Museo Arqueológico Rafael Larco Herrera. New York: Thames and Hudson, 1997.

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