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


Pear (Pyrus communis), a tree belonging to the sub-order Pomacese of the Rosaoeae (q.v.), and to the same genus as the apple (q.v.). It grows from 30 to 70 feet high, with a pyramidal outline; branches spinous in the wild state; leaves scattered, stalked, ovate, and somewhat leathery; flowers in clusters of five to nine, white, with a goat-like smell; fruit turbinate, with a fleshily enlarged stalk, core near the apex and parchment-like, and black seeds. Gritty particles, due to groups of wood-cells, occur in the flesh, especially of the wild form. The pear is native to Great Britain. Of the numerous cultivated sorts some are hard and tasteless when gathered, and require to be kept several months; others are only suited for stewing or baking. Perry, or fermented liquor made from pears, is somewhat similar to cider. The flavour of the fruit is attributed to amyl acetate, an artificially-prepared alcoholic solution of which is used in confectionery under the name of essence of jargonelle pears.