Definition of liverwort in US English:



  • A small flowerless green plant with leaflike stems or lobed leaves, occurring in moist habitats. Liverworts lack true roots and reproduce by means of spores released from capsules.

    Class Hepaticae, division Bryophyta

    • ‘Pollen and spores in the last meal came from ferns and liverwort, which grow in subtropical environments.’
    • ‘Land plants are composed of four monophyletic groups: vascular plants, mosses, liverworts, and hornworts.’
    • ‘A profusion of mosses, liverworts, lichens and ferns cover the woodland floor and festoon tree trunks and branches.’
    • ‘It will be no surprise if they are found also in much older lineages of land plants, such as in mosses, ferns, and liverworts.’
    • ‘Tiny gardens of moss and liverworts flourished where spores had drifted in from outside and settled under the warm glow of the cave lights.’


Late Old English, from liver + wort, translating medieval Latin hepatica.