IVREA, E-vra'a, Italy, city of the province of Turin, Piedmont, 38 miles by rail north of Turin. It has an interesting 10th century cathe dral, and on the hill dominating the town is the 14th century Castello dello Quattro Torn, now used as a prison. A strategical position of im portance on the Dora Baltea where it emerges from the mountains, Ivrea from the earliest times has been prominent in Italian history. It was the headquarters of Napoleon's greatest activity in the Italian campaign of 1800. Pop. 6,100; of commune 11,700.
IVY, a popular name for various climbing, creeping and drooping herbs and shrubs, the most widely known of which are the following: Common or English ivy (Hedera helix) is a tall climbing evergreen shrub of the family Araliacesr, widely planted in Europe (wherF, as in northern Africa and eastern Asia, it is native), and in the wanner parts of the United States, its ornamental, abundant foliage being highly valued for covering walls, rocks and trellises. Its small and inconspicuous greenish, perfect flowers appear late in the autumn and the small black fruits (three to five seeded berries) ripen the succeeding year. The fruits which are devoured by birds, are bitter and pungent and were formerly in medicinal repute. The gummy juice obtained from the stem, as also the fruit, contains the bitter principle hed erin and the hederic acid characteristic of the plant. It has been used in making varnish. Contrary to popular opinion, ivy is not parasitic upon such trees as support it. It merely clings to them by its numerous hold-fast roots pro duced along the entire length of its stems. Such trees as it injures are killed by constric tion. The other popular notion that it makes the walls and houses upon which it climbs damp and unhealthy is also erroneous; in reality it dries them, the roots abstracting such water as reaches the wall through the dense foliage; yet exceptional cases of damage occur. It has
numerous horticultural varieties which differ mainly in the form, color and markings of the leaves. These succeed best in rather moist, rich soils and shady positions and are not usually found to 'be hardy much farther north than New York unless well protected from the winter sun, as upon the north side of buildings, etc. As a cool greenhouse and a house plant it is very popular. Ivy leaves and ivy berries were formerly administered for various me dicinal purposes, but they have been long out of use. The leaf and habit of the common ivy are so characteristic that reference is often made to them in the specific names of other plants, °ivy-leaved° being common as a desig nation. The plant takes a prominent plate in mythology and folk-lore.
Japanese or Boston ivy (Parthenocissus tricusindata) and its near relative Virginia creeper (P. quinquefolid) of the family Vita-. tear, are probably the next best known species to which this name is applied. The former is the more graceful, and is gradually gaining in general favor over the latter, which demands more attention to keep it looking presentable. Both climb by means of tendrils, but the Boston ivy clings better to walls. It has three-lobed leaves ; its rival, a compound leaf of five-leaf lets. Both have brilliant autumnal colors in the north, where the Virginia creeper is the more hardy.
Among the herbaceous ivies Kenilworth ivy (Linaria cymbalaria), German ivy (Senecio miltanoides), and ground ivy (Glechoma keder acea) are best known in America. They are all popular greenhouse plants and are frequently planted in hanging-baskets because of their graceful habits. Poison-ivy or poison-oak is a climbing sumach whose leaflets somewhat resemble those Virginia creeper, but are in threes instead of fives. See POISON-IVY.
OWL. See Owt.