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Encyclopædia Britannica, Ninth Edition/Apricot

APRICOT, the fruit of Prunus armeniaca (Linn.) or Armeniaca vulgaris, according to others. Under the one name it is a species of the genus to which the plums belong, the other establishes it as a distinct genus of the natural order Rosaceæ. The apricot is, like the plum, a stone fruit, cultivated generally throughout temperate regions, and used chiefly in the form of preserves and in tarts. The tree is said to be a native of Armenia (hence the name Armeniaca), and it is found commonly in mountainous countries throughout Asia. It flowers very early in the season, and is a hardy tree, but the fruit will scarcely ripen in Britain unless the tree is trained against a wall. A great number of varieties of the apricot, as of most cultivated fruits, are distinguished by cultivators. The kernels of several varieties are edible, and in Egypt those of the Musch-Musch variety form a considerable article of commerce. The French liqueur Eau de Noyaux is prepared from bitter apricot kernels.