One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A small green or white scale below the ovary of a grass flower.
- ‘Early stages of floret development are similar in the ear and tassel: each floret is enclosed in a lemma and palea and all florets produce two lodicules, three stamens, and a gynoecium.’
- ‘At the middle level, the expression was maintained in the lemma and palea, but decreased in the lodicules and pistil complex and was also observed in the three filaments of the stamens.’
- ‘Each flower has a lemma (outer bract) and a palea (inner bract) at its base, and contains two lodicules and one pistil surrounded by three anthers.’
Mid 19th century: from Latin lodicula, diminutive of lodix ‘coverlet’.
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