One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A green alga of the class Prasinophyceae, comprising mainly free-living, unicellular, flagellate forms with scales on the cell body and flagellae.
1960s; earliest use found in Frank Eric Round (b. 1927). From ancient Greek πράσινος leek-green + -phyte, after French Prasinophycinées or scientific Latin Prasinophyceae, class name.
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