Fun·gi n. pl.; sing. fungus. Biol. A group of thallophytic plant-like organisms of low organization, destitute of chlorophyll, in which reproduction is mainly accomplished by means of asexual spores, which are produced in a great variety of ways, though sexual reproduction is known to occur in certain Phycomycetes, or so-called algal fungi. They include the molds, mildews, rusts, smuts, mushrooms, toadstools, puff balls, and the allies of each. In the two-kingdom classification system they were classed with the plants, but in the modern five-kingdom classification, they are not classed as plants, but are classed in their own separate kingdom fungi, which includes the phyla Zygomycota (including simple fungi such as bread molds), Ascomycota (including the yeasts), Basidiomycota (including the mushrooms, smuts, and rusts), and Deuteromycota (the fungi imperfecti). Some of the forms, such as the yeasts, appear as single-celled microorganisms, but all of the fungi are are eukaryotic, thus distinguishing them from the prokaryotic microorganisms of the kingdon Monera.
Note: ☞ The Fungi appear to have originated by degeneration from various algæ, losing their chlorophyll on assuming a parasitic or saprophytic life. In an earlier classification they were divided into the subclasses Phycomycetes, the lower or algal fungi; the Mesomycetes, or intermediate fungi; and the Mycomycetes, or the higher fungi; by others into the Phycomycetes; the Ascomycetes, or sac-spore fungi; and the Basidiomycetes, or basidial-spore fungi.
Fun·gus n.; pl. L. Fungi E. Funguses
1. Bot. 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. See fungi.
Note: ☞ The fungi are all destitute of chorophyll, and, therefore, to be supplied with elaborated nourishment, must live as saprophytes or parasites. They range in size from single microscopic cells to systems of entangled threads many feet in extent, which develop reproductive bodies as large as a man's head. The vegetative system consists of septate or rarely unseptate filaments called hyphæ; the aggregation of hyphæ into structures of more or less definite form is known as the mycelium. See Fungi, in the Supplement.
2. Med. A spongy, morbid growth or granulation in animal bodies, as the proud flesh of wounds.
n 1: the taxonomic kingdom of lower plants [syn: kingdom Fungi,
2: (pun) the one who buys the drinks
n : a parasitic plant lacking chlorophyll and leaves and true
stems and roots and reproducing by spores
[also: fungi (pl)]