Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Artichoke, a name, probably of Arabic origin, applied to Cynara Scolymus, a thistle-like member of the order Compositae, native to the Mediterranean region, the edible portion of which is the common receptacle and the fleshy bases of the large imbricate bracts of the inflorescence. The Jerusalem Artichoke is the tuber of Helianthus tuberosus, a sunflower, introduced from the United States in the 17th century, but native to Mexico or Brazil. It gets its name from resembling the true artichoke in flavour, "Jerusalem" being a corruption of the Italian "girasole," the old English "turnsole."