Definition of conferva
1 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
2 plural confervae \-(ˌ)vē\ : an alga of the genus Tribonema; broadly : any of various filamentous algae that form scums in still or sluggish fresh water
Start your free trial today and get unlimited access to America's largest dictionary, with:
- More than 250,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
- Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
- Advanced search features
- Ad free!
Origin and Etymology of conferva
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
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up conferva? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).