One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A widespread woodland toadstool that typically has a brightly colored flattened cap and a white stem and gills.
- ‘Most russulas are of medium size, up to 10 cm across the cap, which in young specimens is convex but later acquires a depression in the centre.’
- ‘Slowly, I learn to sniff the nuances: funnel caps have a hint of wet dog; truffle-like earthballs have a tang of burnt rubber; crab russula is redolent of shellfish; yellow sulphur mushrooms remind me of the Thames on a hot day.’
Modern Latin, from Latin russus ‘red’ (because many, such as the sickener, have a red cap).
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