[Fr., from Gk. oryza] A grain grown in warm countries, and forming a food for three-fourths of the human race. Rice is a kind of grass, having a stalk with several stems, each of which bears a cluster of grain. It requires a hot climate and abundance of water. The plant is a native of the East Indies, and is most largely grown for food in India and China, but it is grown also in the southern United States and in the south of Europe. Its habits of growth have been modified by cultivation, so that a variety is grown on uplands without irrigation. The lowland crops are grown with irrigation on lands where no other crop is possible. Rice flour is used for cakes, and rice water is used medicinally. Rice forms the chief food of the Chinese and the Hindus. It contains in 100 lbs. no less than 76 lbs. of . starch, which is largely used in the laundry to stiffen linen, etc.
RICE STARCH UNDER MICROSCOPE.