Manna Lichens

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Manna Lichens

 

the lichen Aspicilia esculenta and other closely related species of the family Lecanoraceae. Manna lichens are found in the steppes, deserts, and mountains of the arid regions of southeastern Europe, Southwest Asia, and North Africa. Crustaceous clumps measuring 1-5 cm in diameter, they are clay or ashen gray in color. The lichens lie freely on the soil and are easily carried long distances by the wind. Manna lichens were sometimes used as food, and this may have brought about the biblical legend of manna “falling from the heavens.” Manna grass, a grass of the genus Glyceria, is also known as manna; it is sometimes used as food.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.