Lemons are the citrus fruit from the tree Citrus limon. They are cultivated primarily for their juice, though the pulp and rind are also used, primarily in cooking. Lemons contain a large amount of citric acid which gives them a sour taste.
The lemon was unknown to the ancient Romans and Greeks; it is first mentioned in the book of Nabathae on agriculture in the third or fourth century. Lemons were not cultivated in the West until after the Arab conquests. They were cultivated in Genoa in the mid-fifteenth century, and appeared in the Azores in 1494. Lemons were once used by the British navy to combat scurvy, as they provided a large amount of vitamin C. The British navy originally thought lemons were overripe limes which they resemble and their sailors became known as limeys, not lemonys.
Both lemons and limess are regularly served as lemonade (natural lemon with water and sugar), or as a garnish for drinks such as cola with a slice either inside or on the rim of the glass. Lemon juice is typically dripped onto battered fish dishes in restaurants in the United Kingdom and other countries.
See also Lemon meringue pie.
Lemon is also slang for a bad car.