Rape, Brassica napus, either (more fully "†navew gentle") in the form grown for its sweet fleshy spindle-shaped root or (more fully "wild navew") in its supposedly wild form. Compare "navet", navette .
Early 16th century; earliest use found in Laurence Andrewe (fl. c1520–1530), printer and translator. From Middle French naveau from nef + -eau.