an organism of the kingdom Fungi lacking chlorophyll and feeding on organic matter; ranging from unicellular or multicellular organisms to spore-bearing syncytia
Any member of the kingdom Fungi; a eukaryotic organism typically having chitin cell walls but no chlorophyll or plastids. Fungi may be unicellular or multicellular.
Origin: From fungus. Compare Ancient Greek σπόγγος.
any one of the Fungi, a large and very complex group of thallophytes of low organization, -- the molds, mildews, rusts, smuts, mushrooms, toadstools, puff balls, and the allies of each
a spongy, morbid growth or granulation in animal bodies, as the proud flesh of wounds
Origin: [L., a mushroom; perh. akin to a doubtful Gr. sponge, for ; if so, cf. E. sponge.]
A fungus is a member of a large group of eukaryotic organisms that includes microorganisms such as yeasts and molds, as well as the more familiar mushrooms. These organisms are classified as a kingdom, Fungi, which is separate from plants, animals, and bacteria. One major difference is that fungal cells have cell walls that contain chitin, unlike the cell walls of plants, which contain cellulose. These and other differences show that the fungi form a single group of related organisms, named the Eumycota, that share a common ancestor. This fungal group is distinct from the structurally similar myxomycetes and oomycetes. The discipline of biology devoted to the study of fungi is known as mycology. Mycology has often been regarded as a branch of botany, even though it is a separate kingdom in biological taxonomy. Genetic studies have shown that fungi are more closely related to animals than to plants. Abundant worldwide, most fungi are inconspicuous because of the small size of their structures, and their cryptic lifestyles in soil, on dead matter, and as symbionts of plants, animals, or other fungi. They may become noticeable when fruiting, either as mushrooms or molds. Fungi perform an essential role in the decomposition of organic matter and have fundamental roles in nutrient cycling and exchange. They have long been used as a direct source of food, such as mushrooms and truffles, as a leavening agent for bread, and in fermentation of various food products, such as wine, beer, and soy sauce. Since the 1940s, fungi have been used for the production of antibiotics, and, more recently, various enzymes produced by fungi are used industrially and in detergents. Fungi are also used as biological pesticides to control weeds, plant diseases and insect pests. Many species produce bioactive compounds called mycotoxins, such as alkaloids and polyketides, that are toxic to animals including humans. The fruiting structures of a few species contain psychotropic compounds and are consumed recreationally or in traditional spiritual ceremonies. Fungi can break down manufactured materials and buildings, and become significant pathogens of humans and other animals. Losses of crops due to fungal diseases or food spoilage can have a large impact on human food supplies and local economies.
Chambers 20th Century Dictionary
fung′gus, n. one of the lowest of the great groups of cellular cryptogams, including mushrooms, toadstools, mould, &c.: proud-flesh formed on wounds:—pl. Fungi (fun′jī), or Funguses (fung′gus-ez).—adjs. Fung′al, Fungā′ceous, like a fungus; Fun′gic (′jik), Fun′giform, having the form of a fungus; Fungiv′orous, feeding on mushrooms; Fung′oid, resembling a mushroom.—ns. Fungol′ogist, a student of fungi; Fungol′ogy, the science of fungi; Fungos′ity, quality of being fungous.—adj. Fung′ous, of or like fungus: soft: spongy: growing suddenly: ephemeral. [L. fungus, a mushroom—Gr. sphonggos, sponggos, a sponge.]
The numerical value of fungus in Chaldean Numerology is: 4
The numerical value of fungus in Pythagorean Numerology is: 7
Sample Sentences & Example Usage
Your cuticles help seal the nail and keep out bacteria and fungus.
El Niño causes a higher average rainfall in the south, favoring rust (fungus).
Toenail fungus responds rather brilliantly to tamanu oil, if you put the oil on the nail, it will get rid of the fungus.
I've been recommending VapoRub as a safe, easy way to get rid of nail fungus for years, you coat the nail once or twice a day.
The vice-president of an advertising agency is a bit of executive fungus that forms on a desk that has been exposed to conference.
Images & Illustrations of fungus
Translations for fungus
From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary
- fongCatalan, Valencian
- फफूंद, कुकुरमुत्ताHindi
- gombaféle, gombaHungarian
- 菌類, きのこJapanese
- PilzeräichLuxembourgish, Letzeburgesch
- harore, hekahekaMāori
- грибок, грибRussian
- guobbaratNorthern Sami
- talingelingaTonga (Tonga Islands)
- гриб, грибо́кUkrainian
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