Derivation uncertain, possibly from the Greek athurein - variable; referring to the variability of the sorus; alternatively from the Greek athoros - meaning good at breeding.
Rhizomes erect, branched, thick, with a dense covering of scales, occasionally forming short trunks. Sterile and fertile fronds similar. Fronds tufted, divided 2-3 times, scaly, deciduous, groove on upper surface of midrib and branches; veins free. Sori extending along one side of a vein and sometimes passing over it. Indusia attached to vein on one side and opening towards the midrib, 'j' shaped, 'u' shaped or round.
c. 500-600 species, cosmopolitan.
Spores or division.
Groove of midrib and branches open and continuous.
Source: (1995). Athyriaceae. In: . Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 1, Ferns, conifers & their allies. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.