Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A genus of polypetalous plants, of the order Caryophyllaceæ, type of tribe Sileneæ. It is characterized by flowers usually with a ten-nerved five-toothed club-shaped ovoid or inflated calyx, five spreading petals upon erect and slender claws commonly with two small scales, ten stamens, and a stalked ovary with one cell, a free central placenta, and usually three styles, the capsule opening at the top by six or by three short valves to discharge the numerous opaque and roughened seeds. About 480 species have been described, but only about 250 are now thought to be distinct. They are annual or perennial herbs of great variety of habit, tall and erect, tufted or procumbent, or partial climbers, with narrow entire opposite leaves, and pink, scarlet, white, or variously colored flowers, commonly in cymes or in one-sided spikes disposed in a terminal panicle. They are abundant in Asia north of the tropics, and in southern Europe and northern Africa, and there are about 12 species in South Africa. Besides 5 or 6 introduced species in the Atlantic border, the United States contains about 32 species, chiefly in the Rocky Mountain and Pacific region, about half of which are nearly or quite confined to California. Most of the species are known as catch-fly. Many are cultivated for their flowers, especially S. viscosa and S. Schafta, with S. Armeria. the sweetwilliam or Lobel's catch-fly, native of the south of Europe. S. Pennsylvanica, a glutinous early-flowering species, is the wild pink of the eastern United States (see cut under
anthophore). (For S. Virginica, see fire-pink, under pink.) Many species with an inflated bladdery calyx are known in general as campion, among which S. Otites, abundant in sands of eastern Europe and known as Spanish campion, is used as an astringent. (For S. acaulis, also known in England as c ushion-pink, see moss-campion.) S. Cucubalus (S. inflata), the bladder-campion, is a wide-spread species of Europe, central and northern Asia, now introduced in the Atlantic United States. It is also called behenand spatling poppy; also, from the shape of its calyx, in America cowbell, in England knapbottle and whitebottle, S. maritima of the English coast (perhaps a variety of the last) has been called witches'thimble.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. (Bot.) A genus of caryophyllaceous plants, usually covered with a viscid secretion by which insects are caught; catchfly.
- n. any plant of the genus Silene
“While pricking one day through the plains of Libya he came to a certain city called Silene, the people of which were bewailing a dire misfortune that had come upon them.”
“Northern Atlantic species include Botiychium lunaria, Ophioglossum vulgatum, Gentianella campestris, Ligusticum scoticum and Sedum rosea with Arctic-Alpine montane species such as Silene acaulis and Saxifraga oppositifolia.”
“Silene" is the title of his book, and thrilling is an adjective that can be applied to every chapter from the first to the last.”
“One of the most beautiful pieces of sculpture exhibited last year in London was the bas-relief of "Silene," shown at the Royal Academy by one of our leading women sculptors.”
“Molecular diversity and derivations of populations of Silene acaulis and Saxifraga oppositifolia from the high Arctic and more southerly latitudes.”
“Genetic diversity, breeding system, and population structure in Silene acaulis (Caryophyllaceae) in West Greenland.”
“Eleven plant species listed as threatened in the United States 'statutes are found in the park; Palmer amsonia Amsonia palmeri, goldenweed Haplopappus salicinus, Draba asprella var. kaibensis, plains cactus Pediocactus bradyi, scouler catchfly Silene rectiramea, phacelia Phacelia filiformis, wild buckwheats Eriogonum darrovii, E. thompsonae var. atwoodi and E. zionis var. coccineum, primrose Primula hunnewellii and clute penstemon Penstemon clutei.”
“Common species found at these altitudes include Delphinium cashmerianum, Glechoma tibetica, Silene longicarpophora, Potentilla fruticosa, and Nepeta spp.”
“Other nationally important terrestrial vegetation species include the early spider orchid Ophrys sphegodes, the Early Gentian Gentianella anglica, the Nottingham catchfly Silene nutans and Wild cabbage Brassica oleracea var. oleracea”
“A total of 900 plant species have been recorder in Aeolian islands, including 4 endemic species: Bassia saxicola, Dianthus rupicola, Silene hicesiae, Cytiscus aeolicus and Ophrys lunurata.”
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