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A Grammatical Dictionary of Botanical Latin

Sphagnum,-i (s.n.II), abl. sg. Sphagno [> L sphagnos,-i (s.m.II), abl. sg. sphagno, in L. & Gk. a kind of fragrant moss, used by Pliny (Lewis & Short); as sphagnos,-I (s.m.II) > Gk. sphagnos: “a kind of fragrant lichen” (Glare); see peat. In Liddell and Scott, the large edition, under sphakos (s.m.II) “a kind of lichen or tree-moss, found on oaks” used by Pliny; “also written [by Pliny] sphagnos ...; found on rocks; also phaskon in Theophrastus.” There is no distinct reference to a plant growing in bogs, as in Sphagnum bogs.

- nomen antiquum, a Plinio lichenibus muscisque nonnullis arboreis datum, a Dillenio huicce generi impositum, a Linnaeo et Hedwigio sancitum [sic]. Cf. Dill. Musc. p. 240. (C. Mueller), an ancient name, given by Pliny for some arboreal mosses and lichens, imposed by Dillenius on this very genus, had been ratified by Linnaeus and Hedwig. Compare Dillenius, Musci page 240. [see ‘sanctus,-a,-um (part.A)’ for ‘sancitus.’]

- [Sphagnum; C. Muell.) Species permultae hucusque ab auctoribus impositae sunt, sed bene distinctae paucae tantum inveniuntur. Notas hactenus eas optimas habuerunt, quae ex habitu deduci possunt.

Vagas intelleximus et aliis melioribus, e structura foliorum caulinorum, rameorum et peduncularium ductis, usi sumus; there are very many species up to now introduced by authors, but only a few are found to be well distinguished. They thought up to now the characters best which they are able to deduce from the habit.

We have understood these to be indefinite and we have used [+ dat] better ones from the structure of the cauline, branch and peduncular [i.e. perichaetial] leaves.

Sequentes sunt: [the following characters are]

1. Folia caulina. In cauli primario plerumque squamaeformia scariosa lingulata membranacea et structura peduncularium simili inveniuntur. Basi omnes cellulis parvis plus minus rotundatis instructa. CAULINE LEAVES. Are found on the primary stem usually scale-like, scarious, lingulate, membranaceous and similar in the structure of the peduncular [i.e. perichaetial leaves].

2. Folia ramea semper fere structura propria, basi cellulis elongatis semper instructa. BRANCH LEAVES almost always with a special structure, at the base always provided with elongate cells.

3. Folia peduncularia. Perichaetialia nominari nequeunt, quum in longitudine rami totius fructiferi axillaris, saepe creberrima, posita sint. Structura plerumque valde propria basi cellulis elongatis constanter instructa; THE PEDUNCULAR LEAVES. The perichaetial leaves are unable to be designated, when, often very dense, they may be situated on the length of the whole axillary, fructiferous branch. The structure usually is most specific, uniformly provided with elongate cells at the base.

4. Celllulae ramorum in longitudine rami, tegmenti instar, positae, constanter elongatae, hyalinae, laxe cohaerentes. CELLS OF THE BRANCHES positioned on the length of the branch, like a tegmen [i.e. husk, glume], are uniformly elongate, hyaline, loosely pressed together.

5. Omnes hae partes fibris annularibus instructae vel iis carentes, quo factum est, ut termini plures, brevitatis causa, imponendi sint: ALL THESE PARTS provided with annular fibers [i.e. fibrils or filaments] or lacking them, in this way it happened that many terms, for the sake of brevity, may be applied:

a. cellulae inanes: fibris annularibus carentes; vacant cells: lacking annular fibers [i.e. fibrils or filaments].

b. cellulae repletae: fibris annularibus instructae; filled cells: provided with annular fibers [i.e. fibrils or filaments].

6. Ductus intercellulares; inter foliorum cellulas omnium reperiuntur; INTERCELLULAR VESSELS [i.e. DUCTS]; are found between the cells of all leaves.

a. Ductus homomorphi: angusti simplices (i. e. haud iterum reticulati) ideo parietibus cellularum tecti; HOMOMORPHOUS [sharing the same shape] VESSELS [DUCTS]: narrow, simple (i.e. not reticulated a second time) therefore covered by the walls of the cells. (note the duct or vessel is different from the cell and is hidden within its walls).

b. Ductus heteromorphi: parietibus cellularum latiores et ideo ab iis non obtecti; HETEROMORPHOUS [of dissimilar shape] VESSELS [DUCTS]: wider than the walls of the cells and therefore not covered over by them.

Sunt [they are]:

a. simplices, i. e. haud iterum reticulata, simple, i.e. not reticulated a second time.

b. cellulosi, i. e. cellulis pluribus reticulati articulati; cellulose [i.e. full of cells], articulated, reticulated with many cells.

Ductus heteromorphi simplices ac cellulares vel chlorophyllo instructi (repleti) vel eo carentes (inanes); HETERMORPHOUS VESSELS [DUCTS] simple and cellular or provided with chlorophyll (filled) or lacking this [i.e. chlorophyll] (empty).

7. Cellularum forma. Diversissima, brevis vel elongata, angusta vel ampla, exacte prosenchymatica (hypnoidea vel angulata) parietibus strictis composita vel pluries flexuosa (serpentina). Formae intermediae facile derivari possunt; SHAPE OF THE CELLS. Very diverse, short or elongate, narrow or big, strictly prosenchymatic (hypnoid or angled), composed of straight walls or many of them flexuose (serpentine). Intermediate forms are easily obtained.

- Speramus fore, ut hisce notis ac terminis necessarie imponendis species Sphagnorum facile atque feliciter distinguantur; WE HOPE, with these very characters and terms unavoidably imposed, that the species of Sphagnum may easily and successfully may in future be distinguished.

Fructificationis tempus omnium congenerum Europaeorum, reg. temperatae, arcticae et calidioris: aestate, mensib. Julii et Augusti (C. Muell); the TIME OF FRUCTIFICATION [i.e. fruit-development] of all the European congeners [i.e. genus Sphagnum-members], in the temperate, arctic and warmer regions: in summer, in the months of July and August.


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

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