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[mahy-see-lee-uh m] /maɪˈsi li əm/
noun, plural mycelia
[mahy-see-lee-uh] /maɪˈsi li ə/ (Show IPA).
the mass of hyphae that form the vegetative part of a fungus.
1830-40; < New Latin, equivalent to Greek myk- myc- + (h)ḗl(os) wart, nail + New Latin -ium -ium
Related forms
mycelial, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for mycelium
  • Stop logging and tearing up the mycelium would help too.
  • Underground, the mycelium is already marshalling its resources to produce the next mushroom.
  • Leaf edges are brown, some white fungal mycelium may be present on the leaves.
British Dictionary definitions for mycelium


noun (pl) -lia (-lɪə)
the vegetative body of fungi: a mass of branching filaments (hyphae) that spread throughout the nutrient substratum
Derived Forms
mycelial, adjective
myceloid (ˈmaɪsɪˌlɔɪd) adjective
Word Origin
C19 (literally: nail of fungus): from myco- + Greek hēlos nail
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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mycelium in Medicine

mycelium my·ce·li·um (mī-sē'lē-əm)
n. pl. my·ce·li·a (-lē-ə)
The vegetative part of a fungus, which consists of a mass of branching, threadlike hyphae.

my·ce'li·al or my·ce'li·an adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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mycelium in Science
Plural mycelia
The mass of fine branching tubes (known as hyphae) that forms the main growing structure of a fungus. Visible structures like mushrooms are reproductive structures produced by the mycelium.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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