An eggplant or aubergine is either of two species of nightshade, Solanum melongena and S. esculentum, bearing large pendulous purple or white edible fruit.
Although aubergine is the (British) English name given to this fruit, it is often invoked to describe other objects with a dark plum-colour. This name comes from the French Aubergine, derived from Catalan albergínia, from Arabic al-bAdhinjAn, the eggplant
The word "melongena" is from the Sanskrit "vatinganah", which has produced a number of names for this plant in various languages: brinjal, badingan, melongena, melenzana, berenjena, albergínia, aubergine, brown-jolly, and mad-apple (misinterpretation of Italian "melenzana" as "mela insana").
See Moussaka (Greek cuisine), Mutabal (Lebanese cuisine), Escalivada (Catalan cuisine), Caviar d'Aubergine (French Provencal Cuisine)