capitalized in some especially former classifications : a genus of filamentous green algae containing a number of species of doubtful relationship many of which are now usually placed in the genus Tribonema
plural confervae
: an alga of the genus Tribonema
broadly : any of various filamentous algae that form scums in still or sluggish fresh water

Word History


New Latin, from Latin, a water plant, from confervēre to boil together, grow together, heal, from com- + fervēre, fervere to boil; from its supposed healing power

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Dictionary Entries Near conferva

Cite this Entry

“Conferva.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2024.

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