But the fall harvest doesn’t let word lovers go hungry: it yields a cornucopia of etymological roots as well. The origin of the Greek word is unclear. In English, cole itself was an old word for cabbage as well as other leafy greens, like colewort, which American English speakers came to pronounce as collard, hence collard greens. BeetBeet comes from the Old English bete, in turn from the Latin beta. The word was common in Old English but disappeared from the existing record until about the 1400s.