fern

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See also: Fern

English[edit]

A fern

Etymology[edit]

From Old English fearn, from Proto-Germanic *farną (compare Dutch varen, German Farn), from Proto-Indo-European *pornóm (wing, feather). Cognate with Lithuanian spar̃nas, Albanian fier (fern), Avestan [script?] (parəna, feather), Sanskrit पर्ण (parṇá, feather).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

fern (plural ferns)

  1. Any of a group of some twenty thousand species of vascular plants classified in the division Pteridophyta that lack seeds and reproduce by shedding spores to initiate an alternation of generations.

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German[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old High German ferrana.

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

fern (comparative ferner, superlative am fernsten)

  1. remote
  2. far away

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Icelandic[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From the root fer-. Compare tvennur, þrennur.

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

fern

  1. four (used when counting singular nouns, pluralia tantum or groupings (especially pairs) of items, or when the item counted is missing from the sentence or separated by the preposition af (“of”))
    fernir skórfour pairs of shoes
    fernir tónleikarfour concerts (tónleikar is plurale tantum)
    Þetta má gera á fernan hátt. – This can be done in four ways. (háttur cannot be used in its plural form in this sense)
    Það er fernt sem mig vantar. – There are four [things] that I need. (noun omitted)
    Ég vil fá fernt af öllu. – I want four of everything.

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Old Irish[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Proto-Celtic *wernā- (compare Welsh gwern). Cognate with Old Armenian գերան (geran).

Noun[edit]

fern f

  1. alder
  2. shield (made of alder wood)
  3. pole, stake
  4. the letter F

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Old Saxon[edit]

Noun[edit]

fern m

  1. Alternative form of infern.