Capsicum is a genus of flowering plants in the nightshade family, Solanaceae. Its species are native to the Americas, where they have been cultivated for thousands of years by the people of the tropical Americas, and are now cultivated worldwide. Some of the members of Capsicum are used as spices, vegetables, and medicines. The fruit of Capsicum plants have a variety of names depending on place and type. They are commonly called chilli pepper, red or green pepper, or sweet pepper in Britain, and typically just capsicum in Australia, New Zealand, and Indian English. The large mild form is called bell pepper in the U.S. and Canada. They are called paprika in some other countries. The generic name is derived from the Greek word καπτο, meaning “to bite” or “to swallow.”

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