from The Century Dictionary.
- noun A genus of ferns characterized by linear or oblong sori lying on the veins (which are free in most species) and obliquely to the costa, the involucre being conformable to the sorus and opening toward the costa when single.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- noun in some classification systems placed in family Polypodiaceae
Sorry, no etymologies found.
The most important of the larger species are woodwardia, aspidium, asplenium, and, above all, the common pteris.
Many fine ferns dwell here also, especially the beautiful and interesting rock-ferns -- pellaea, and cheilanthes of several species -- fringing and rosetting dry rock-piles and ledges; woodwardia and asplenium on damp spots with fronds six or seven feet high; the delicate maiden-hair in mossy nooks by the falls, and the sturdy, broad-shouldered pteris covering nearly all the dry ground beneath the oaks and pines.
The grass only grows sparsely in tufts above this place, and though vegetation exists up to a height of 10,000 feet on this side, it consists, for the most part, of grey lichens, a little withered grass, and a hardy asplenium.
Nowhere, in the temperate zone, have I seen such an abundance of the pteris, blechnum, and asplenium; yet none of these plants have the stateliness of the arborescent ferns which, at the height of five or six hundred toises, form the principal ornament of equinoctial America.