• WordNet 3.6
    • n Lichenes comprising the lichens which grow symbiotically with algae; sometimes treated as an independent group more or less coordinate with algae and fungi
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • lichenes A division of cellular, mostly thalloid, cryptogamic plants, formerly regarded as constituting a distinct class, but now, in accordance with the theory of Schwendener and others, considered to be genuine fungi of the divisions Ascomycetes and Basidiomycetes. They exhibit a remarkable parasitism. “The host-plants are algæ, growing as a rule in damp situations, but belonging to a variety of groups, frequently to the Chroöcoccaceæ and Nostocaceæ, still more frequently to the Palmellaceæ, sometimes to the Chroölepideæ, rarely to the Confervaceæ” (Goebel, Outlines of Classification, etc., p. 114). The algæ, which are also known in a free state and separate from the fungi, are embraced by the hyphæ of the lichen-fungus, and the two elements together compose a thallus of definite form. A transverse section of a lichen-thallus shows the hyphæ to be more or less closely interlaced about the algal cells or gonidia. This parasitism, which is without parallel in the animal kingdom or any other part of the vegetable kingdom, instead of resulting detrimentally to the algæ, incites them to more rapid activity and more vigorous increase. The reproduction is characteristic of the particular class to which the fungus belongs, and in a few lichens examined by Stahl there is an adaptation for the supply of algæ to the new lichen: algal cells, the offspring of the thallus-algæ (gonidia), are cast off along with the spores, so that the germ-tubes of the spores find suitable hosts at once. Propagation is also abundantly carried on by means of soredia, or brood-buds, which consist of one or more algal cells, surrounded by the fungus-hyphæ, which separate from the parent thallus. Lichens have been produced synthetically by Stahl and others by sowing the fungus-spores upon favorable algal cells, thus proving beyond question their dual nature. The older systematic lichenologists prefer to consider lichens as autonomous.
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In literature:

A popular work on Algae, Fungi, Mosses, and Lichens.
"The Works of William Shakespeare [Cambridge Edition] [9 vols.]" by William Shakespeare
An uncooked cow after six days of lichen "infused spirit into our starving party," relates Franklin.
"A Book of Discovery" by Margaret Bertha (M. B.) Synge
The yard was full of rank weeds, and damp masses of lichen and moss hung from the eaves of the house, and covered its roof.
"The Island Home" by Richard Archer
No more of the lichen could be found.
"The Young Voyageurs" by Mayne Reid
Dried mosses and lichens of various sorts may be used in this.
"Home Taxidermy for Pleasure and Profit" by Albert B. Farnham
There were massive gables to right and left, and the old tiles were orange and grey with a thick coating of lichen.
"In the King's Name" by George Manville Fenn
He was gazing upon the lichen covering their cache.
"The Heart of Unaga" by Ridgwell Cullum
This lichen will sometimes hang down from the branches in strings of weeping vegetation to the length of five feet and more.
"Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 61, No. 378, April, 1847" by Various
The ascent of the cliff was not difficult, though at first he made two or three awkward slips on the wet moss and lichen.
"Kiddie the Scout" by Robert Leighton
Nothing more complex than the lichens had ever evolved there, as thousands of drillings into the crust of the planet had shown.
"Dead Giveaway" by Gordon Randall Garrett

In poetry:

Who, to the land he loves so well
Returning, towards the sunset hour
Wends homeward, feels yet stronger spell
In lichened roof and grey church-tower;
"The Door Of Humility" by Alfred Austin
Their myriad-mirrored eyes
Great day reflect.
By their exquisite farings
Is this granite specked;
Is trodden to infinite dust;
By gnawing lichens decked.
"The Corner Stone" by Walter de la Mare
The winged impetuous spirit, the white flame
That was her soul once, whither has it flown?
Above her brow gray lichens blot her name
Upon the carven stone.
"Broken Music" by Thomas Bailey Aldrich
Dormered and verandaed, cool,
Locust-girdled, on the hill;
Stained with weather-wear, and dull-
Streak'd with lichens; every sill
Thresholding the beautiful;
"The Old Farm" by Madison Julius Cawein
The little lizards lie all day
Gray on its rocks of lichen-gray;
And, insect-Ariels of the sun,
The butterflies make bright its way,
Its path where chipmunks run.
"The Old" by Madison Julius Cawein
Like knots against the trunks of trees
The lichen-colored moths are pressed;
And, wedged in hollow blooms, the bees
Seem clots of pollen; in its nest
The wasp has crawled and lies at ease.
"Rain In The Woods" by Madison Julius Cawein

In news:

At our cottage up north, we have lichen or moss growing on parts of our deck , the walkway and the steps down to the driveway.
In areas where you have lichens: Do you dislike the look, or are you afraid it's damaging the walkways and deck .
A hiker stands between two lichen -covered rocks on Lichen Trail following a spring snowstorm.
While some people aren't keen on the look of lichen decorating their paths and buildings, others like the rustic look.
Except for pollution, nothing much disturbs lichens .
There are lichens in Greenland that may be 4,500 years old, placing them among the world's oldest living organisms.
Some of the larger splotches of map-like, gray-green lichens on the boulders around your home may well have been there for a thousand or more years.
"There was an old study in England in which they sent schoolchildren to collect lichens , and found that you get fewer lichens the closer you get to an industrial area," Hill said.
None is more mysterious or delightful to behold than the lowly lichen.
Except for pollution, nothing much disturbs lichens.
Dangling 1,200 feet above Franconia Notch, Niels Nielsen sprays bleach on the Old Man's face to kill lichen and moss that grow in cracks.
Before the Mariner flybys in the 1960s, scientists thought Mars had water and life, even if it was just some sort of plantlike lichen.
Its slight orange color cast is perhaps caused by common orange lichen often found near cattle farms where ammonia is present in the air.
Draping mosses hang from tree limbs, and mushrooms and lichen cling to the trunks.
Lichen Loop at Heil Ranch .

In science:

Brieskorn, Die Fundamentalgruppe des Raumes der regul¨aren Orbits einer end lichen komplexen Spiegelugsgruppe, Invent.
Artin groups of spherical type up to isomorphism
Remak, ˜Uber die Darstel lung der end lichen Gruppen als Untergruppen direkter Produkte, J. reine Angew.
Second maximal subgroups of the finite alternating and symmetric groups
Theorie der end lichen und unend lichen Graphen.
Factor complexity of infinite words associated with non-simple Parry numbers
Thoma, Die unzerlegbaren, positive-definiten Klassenfunktionen der abz¨ahlbar unend lichen, symmetrischen Gruppe, Math.
Random Walks on Strict Partitions
Die unipotenten Charaktere fur die GAP-Charaktertafeln der end lichen Gruppen vom Lie-Typ, Diplomarbeit.
Simple linear groups $PSL_4(q)$ are determined by the set of their character degrees