Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

fern

play
noun \ˈfərn\

Simple Definition of fern

  • : a type of plant that has large, delicate leaves and no flowers

Full Definition of fern

  1. :  any of a division (Filicophyta) or class (Filicopsida) of flowerless spore-producing vascular plants having alternating sporophyte and gametophyte generations; especially :  any of an order (Filicales) of homosporous plants possessing roots, stems, and leaflike fronds — compare seed fern

fern·like play \-ˌlīk\ adjective
ferny play \ˈfər-nē\ adjective

Origin of fern

Middle English, from Old English fearn; akin to Old High German farn fern, Sanskrit parṇa wing, leaf


First Known Use: before 12th century


Learn More about fern


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up fern? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

February 10, 2016

to put in good humor

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image33683556

How much does a batman (the Turkish unit of measurement) weigh?

100 pounds 196.5 pounds 16.96 pounds 2.2 pounds
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ