American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. Any of several tropical evergreen trees or shrubs of the genus Rhizophora, having stiltlike roots and stems and forming dense thickets along tidal shores.
- n. Any of various similar shrubs or trees, especially of the genus Avicennia.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A tree of the genus Rhizophora, chiefly R. mucronata (R. Mangle), the common mangrove, abounding on tropical shores in both hemispheres. It is a low tree of most singular habit, remarkable for a copious development of adventitious roots, which arch out from the lower part of the trunk, and at length descend from the branches; it is peculiar also in that its seed germinates in the fruit, sending down its radicle into the mud, sometimes a distance of several feet, before detachment from the parent. By these means the mangrove spreads thickly over the tidal mud, forming impenetrable and highly malarial bogs, hundreds of miles in length. The wood is valuable for fuel, for piles, etc., and is susceptible of a beautiful polish. The astringent bark is useful in medicine and for tanning. The fruit is of a dry and coriaceous texture. See cut in preceding column.
- n. Another plant of similar habit, especially a plant of the genus Avicennia. They are littoral trees, widely diffused in the tropics, throwing out a tangled mass of arching roots above ground, and sending up abundant asparagus-like shoots from the underground roots. The seed also germinates as it ripens. A. officinalis (including A. tomentosa), called
white mangrove, extends to Australia and New Zealand, the manawa of the Maoris, mistakenly reported to yield an aromatic gum. A. nitida of tropical America and Africa is the black or olive mangrove. See blackwood, 3.
- n. In zoology, the mango-fish.
- n. Bruguiera Rheedii, a small tree which yields a good tan-bark and a hard, durable, yellowish-brown wood;
- n. Heritiera littoralis, a tree of the family Sterculiaceæ. See Heritiera and sundari.
- n. Any of various tropical evergreen trees or shrubs that grow in shallow coastal water.
- n. A habitat with such plants; mangrove forest; mangrove swamp.
- n. Plants of the Rhizophoraceae family.
- n. Trees of the genus Rhizophora.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. (Bot.) The name of one or two trees of the genus Rhizophora (Rhizophora Mangle, and Rhizophora mucronata, the last doubtfully distinct) inhabiting muddy shores of tropical regions, where they spread by emitting aërial roots, which fasten in the saline mire and eventually become new stems. The seeds also send down a strong root while yet attached to the parent plant.
- n. (Zoöl.) The mango fish.
- n. a tropical tree or shrub bearing fruit that germinates while still on the tree and having numerous prop roots that eventually form an impenetrable mass and are important in land building
- Circa 1610, corruption of earlier mangrow by folk etymology influence of grove, from Portuguese mangue, from Spanish mangle (or directly from Spanish), from a Caribbean language, possibly Taino, another Arawakan language, or a Cariban language. (Wiktionary)
- Probably Portuguese mangue (from Taino) + grove. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“They say illegal fishing in mangrove forests and habitat destruction in the states of Orissa and West Bengal, in eastern India, has led to a steep fall in crocodile numbers, from several thousand a century ago to less than 100 in the early 1970s.”
“If you were a VC with a D-40 rocket grenade launcher, you'd hear the humming of the Swift boats and you'd go and hide in mangrove thickets, and put the rocket launcher on your shoulder, and kaboom!”
“There are no walks; and if you go one way, you sink knee-deep in mangrove swamps; another you are covered with sand-flies; and a third is crawling up a steep mountain by a mule-path to get a glimpse of the sea beyond the lagoons which surround”
“With its legs buried underwater, the mangrove is a case study in evolutionary biology.”
“In effect, few species can be considered exclusive inhabitants of mangroves, although many are most commonly found associated with mangroves, and it is only in this sense that they can be called mangrove fauna.”
“It has been suggested that the viviparity of the mangrove is a survival of a very remote period in the development of the earth — that a mangrove swamp represents an age when the earth was enveloped in clouds and mist; and that with the gradual decrease in tepid aqueous vapour the viviparous habit, then almost universal, was lost, except in the case of this plant.”
“They cut it in thin strips and hung it over the fire of the black mangrove, which is one of the smokiest woods on earth.”
“Atlantic, I could not help recalling the mangrove swamps and lagoons of the tropic island in which my childhood had been passed, wondering the while, too, whether the _Josephine_ would not be reported as lost through the protraction of her voyage -- for she was expected to reach”
“It has been suggested that the viviparity of the mangrove is a survival of a very remote period in the development of the earth -- that a mangrove swamp represents an age when the earth was enveloped in clouds and mist; and that with the gradual decrease in tepid aqueous vapour the viviparous habit, then almost universal, was lost, except in the case of this plant.”
“-- This plant is known as the mangrove, possibly because no man can live in the swampy groves that are covered with it in tropical countries.”
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