www.mobot.org Research Home | Search | Contact | Site Map  

North America
South America
General Taxonomy
Photo Essays
Training in Latin

Wm. L. Brown Center
Graduate Studies
Research Experiences
  for Undergraduates

Imaging Lab
MBG Press
Climate Change
Catalog Fossil Plants
Image Index
Rare Books

Res Botanica
All Databases
What's New?
People at MO
Visitor's Guide
Jobs & Fellowships
Research Links
Site Map


Browse by Keyword





A Grammatical Dictionary of Botanical Latin

Ala,-ae (s.f.I), abl.sg. ala: wing, flat part; “formerly an axil, but not now employed in that sense. One of the lateral petals of a papilionaceous flower. A membranous expansion of any kind; as round the seed of a Bignoniad; from the summit, or the side of a seed-vessel” (Lindley); “a wing; also, the lateral petals of a papilionaceous corolla” (Fernald 1950); (in mosses) applied to the often differentiated cells in the basal corners of leaves, the ‘alar region’ (regio,-onis (s.f.III) alaris (adj.B), abl. sg. regione alari); see feather; in the older literature, used of the laminae of mosses; (see note below);

- semina plana, reniformia, dorso ala circumdata, ventre exalato affixa; albumen tenue v. ad pelliculam reductum (B&H), seeds flat, kidney-shaped, on the back surrounded by a wing, on the front without a wing attached; albumen thin or reduced to a pellicle [i.e. (thin) membrane].

- laciniae ala angusta confluentes, laciniae confluent by a narrow wing.

- ala dorsali a folii medio ad apicem usque continua, dorsal wing from the middle of the leaf to the apex continuous.

- seminum testa in alam expansa, the seed-coat of the seeds expanded into a wing.

- alis columnae conspicue minoribus, with the wings of the column conspicuously smaller.

- folia alis hinc et illinc late undulatis, the leaves here and there broadly undulate.

- cellulae alarum ad costam 54x72 um, medio 36 x63 um, margine 27 x 72 um (Steph.) cells of the wings at the costa 54x72 um, in the middle 36x63, at the margin 27x72 um.

- alae obovato-oblongae, liberae, the wings obovate-oblong, free.

- carina obtusa, basin versus gibba, longitudine alarum, the keel obtuse, gibbous toward the base, with the length of the wings.

- alarum angulo interiore longissime appendiculato, with the inner angle of the wings very longly appendiculate.

- carina leviter incurva, alis vexilloque longior, the keel lightly incurved, longer than the wings and the vexillum.

- carina vexillo et alis plus dimidio brevior, the keel shorter by more than half the vexillum and the wings.

- (moss) altera ala magis minusve inflexa,(DozyMoeken), one lamina more or less inflexed.

- (moss) areolatione in toto limbo et media baseos vaginantis parte compacta, neque uti in baseos alis ex unico strato conflata (DozyMoek), with the areolation on the whole limb and the middle part of the sheathing base compact, not, as in the wings [i.e. alar regions] of the base united into a single layer.

NOTE: in some thalloid liverworts, such as Geothallus or Petalophyllum, outgrowths on the thallus surface have been erroneously called ‘leaves’ (folia), but which are ‘leaf-like’ lamellae or lobes, or even wings (ala,-ae (s.f.I);

- [Marchantia; liverwort] frons ad 5 cm. longa, 10 mm. lata, costa bene producta, valde convexa, sensim in alas excurrens (Steph.), the frond [i.e. thallus] to 5 cm long, 10 mm wide, the costa well elongated, strongly convex, gradually running out into wings [i.e. leaf-like outgrowths].

- [Marchantia; liverwort] costa bene producta, late convexa, sensim in alas tenerrimas excurrens (Steph.), costa well developed, broadly convex, gradually running out into very thin alae [i.e. wing-like outgrowths].

NOTE: “1. formerly an axil, but now obsolete in that sense; 2. a lateral petal of a papilionaceous flower; 3. a membranous expansion of any kind, as in the seed of Bignoniaceae; 4. employed by Wm. Smith for the marginal processes in Surirella; 5. the outer segment of the coronal lobes in some Asclepiads; 6. in Mosses, the alar cells are those at the basal angle of a leaf“ (Jackson).

in the sense of axil:

- [moss] in Phasco, Tortula plurimisque generibus monoicis, flos foemineus trunci cacumen tenet, masculus vero paulo inferius in foliorum alis reconditur (Bridel), in Phascum, Tortula and many monoicous genera, the female flowers hold to the summit of the trunk [i.e. stem], the masculine are hidden in fact, a little lower in the axils of the leaves.

- paniculae axillares v. extraalares, pedales et ultra, laxe ramosae (B&H), panicles axillary or (extraaxillary, i.e. on the internode beyond the axil), a foot long and more, loosely branched.

NOTE: alius, alia, aliud (irregular adj.A): another, other (of several), another may be confused with ‘ala’ in cases other than the nominative. “alius”, etc. always has the extra ‘i’ after the initial al-;

Talara,-ae (s.f.I): “(obsol.) the wings [or alae] of a papilionaceous corolla” (Lindley) [> Gk. talaria, the winged shoes of Mercury” (Jackson)].

Campyloptera, ‘curved wing’ from the broadly winged incurved margins of the siliquae: siliquae biformes, cymbaeformes, marginibus incurvis late alatis, aliae 1-loculares 1-sperma, aliae 2-loculares; alis plicato-striatis crenulatisque (B&H), the silique of two shapes, with the incurved margins broadly winged, some 1-locular, 1-seeded, others 2-locular; with the wings plicate-striate and crenulate.


A work in progress, presently with preliminary A through R, and S, and with S (in part) through Z essentially completed.
Copyright © P. M. Eckel 2010-2018

© 1995-2019 Missouri Botanical Garden, All Rights Reserved
4344 Shaw Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63110
(314) 577-5100

Technical Support