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The Letter G With Lichens
Photograph - Digital Photograph
The letter G of the alphabet is rusting away on the door of an old work truck, lichens are growing on top of the cracking paint.
Lichens are composite organisms consisting of a fungus (the mycobiont) and a photosynthetic partner (the photobiont or phycobiont) growing together in a symbiotic relationship. The photobiont is usually either a green alga (commonly Trebouxia) or cyanobacterium. The morphology, physiology and biochemistry of lichens are very different from those of the isolated fungus and alga in culture. Lichens occur in some of the most extreme environments on Earth, arctic tundra, hot deserts, rocky coasts, and toxic slag heaps. However, they are also abundant as epiphytes on leaves and branches in rain forests and temperate woodland, on bare rock, including walls and gravestones, and on exposed soil surfaces (e.g., Collema) in otherwise mesic habitats. The roofs of many buildings have lichens growing on them. Lichens are widespread and may be long-lived, many are also vulnerable to environmental disturbance, and may be useful to scientists in assessing the effects of air pollution, ozone depletion, and metal contamination. Lichens have also been used in making dyes and perfumes, as well as in traditional medicines.
The letter 'G' was introduced in the Old Latin period as a variant 'c' to distinguish voiced /ɡ/ from voiceless /k/. The recorded originator of 'g' is freedman Spurius Carvilius Ruga, the first Roman to open a fee-paying school who taught around 230 BC. At this time, 'k' had fallen out of favor, and 'c', which had formerly represented both /ɡ/ and /k/ before open vowels, had come to express /k/ in all environments.
April 16th, 2013
Viewed 43 Times - Last Visitor from San Francisco, CA on 11/23/2014 at 8:10 AM
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