One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A cosmopolitan genus of seaweeds (marine red algae, division Rhodophyta, class Bangiophyceae, order Bangiales), with simple foliose thalli varying in colour from rose to purple; (also porphyra) a seaweed of this genus, which includes a number of edible species known as laver or purple laver in Wales and England, nori in Japan.
Mid 19th century; earliest use found in John Loudon (1783–1843), landscape gardener and horticultural writer. From scientific Latin Porphyra, genus name from ancient Greek πορϕύρα purple.
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