Online Encyclopedia

CYPERACEAE

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V07, Page 693 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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CYPERACEAE, in botany, a natural order of the monocotyledonous group of seed-bearing plants. They are grass-like herbs, sometimes annual, but more often persist by means of an under-ground stem from which spring erect solitary or clustered, generally three-sided aerial sthms, with leaves in three rows. The minute flowers are arranged in spikelets somewhat as in grasses, and these again in larger spike-like or panicled inflorescences. The flower has in rare cases a perianth of six scale-like leaves arranged in two whorls, and thus conforming to the common monocotyledonous type of flower. Generally the perianth is represented by hairs, bristles or similar developments, often in-definite in number; in the two largest genera, Cyperus, (fig. I) and Carex (fig. 2), the flowers are naked. In a few cases two whorls of stamens are present, with three members in each, but generally only three are present; the pistil consists of three or two carpels, united to form an ovary bearing a corresponding number of styles and containing one ovule. The flowers, which are often unisexual, are wind-pollinated. The fruit is one-seeded, with a tough, leathery or hard wall. There are nearly 70 genera containing about 3000 species and widely distributed throughout the earth, chiefly as marsh-plants. In the arctic zone they form 1o% of the flora; they will flourish in soils rich in humus which are too acid to support grasses. The large genus Cyperus contains about 400 species, chiefly in the warmer parts of the earth; C. Papyrus is the Egyptian Papyrus. Carex, CY-PRES-CYPRESS 693 testator cannot be carried into effect, the court will apply the funds to some other purpose, as near the original as possible (whence the name). For instance, a testator having left a fund to be divided into four parts—one-fourth to be used for " the redemption of British slaves in Turkey and Barbary," and the other three-fourths for various local charities—it was found that there were no British slaves in Turkey or Barbary, and as to that part of the gift therefore the testator's purpose failed. In- stead of allowing the portion of the fund devoted to this impossible purpose to lapse to the next of kin, the court devoted it to the purposes specified for the rest of the estate. This doctrine is only applied where " a general intention of charity is manifest " in the will, and not where one particular object only was present to the mind of the testator. Thus, a testator having left money to be applied in building a church in a par- ticular parish, and that having been found to be impossible, the fund will not be applied 2.-Carex riparia, the largest British sedge, from 3 to 5 ft. high. 1, Male flower cy-pres, but will go to the next of kin. of Carex; 2, female flower of Carex; 3, seed of Carex, cut lengthwise. In the United States, charitable trusts have become more frequent as the wealth of the country has progressed, and are regarded with in-creasing favour by the courts. The cy-pres doctrine has been either expressly or virtually applied to uphold them in several of the states, and in some there has been legislation in the same direction. In others the doctrine has been repudiated, e.g. in Michigan, Tennessee, Indiana and Virginia. For many years the New York courts held that this doctrine was not in force there, but in 1893 the legislature repealed the provisions of the revised statutes on which these decisions rested and restored the ancient law. Statutes passed in Pennsylvania have established the doctrine there, and dissolved any doubt as to its being in force in that state.
End of Article: CYPERACEAE
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CYNOSURE (Lat. cynosura, Gr. Kuv000upa, from iambs,...
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