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[per-i-kahrp] /ˈpɛr ɪˌkɑrp/
noun, Botany.
the walls of a ripened ovary or fruit, sometimes consisting of three layers, the epicarp, mesocarp, and endocarp.
a membranous envelope around the cystocarp of red algae.
Origin of pericarp
1750-60; < New Latin pericarpium < Greek perikárpion pod. See peri-, -carp
Related forms
pericarpial, pericarpic, adjective
pericarpoidal, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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British Dictionary definitions for pericarp


the part of a fruit enclosing the seeds that develops from the wall of the ovary
a layer of tissue around the reproductive bodies of some algae and fungi
Derived Forms
pericarpial, pericarpic, adjective
Word Origin
C18: via French from New Latin pericarpium
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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pericarp in Science
The tissue that arises from the ripened ovary wall of a fruit; the fruit wall. In fleshy fruits, the pericarp can often be divided into the exocarp, the mesocarp, and the endocarp. For example, in a peach, the skin is the exocarp, the yellow flesh is the mesocarp, while the stone or pit surrounding the seed represents the endocarp.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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