In the German and English-language literature, both the individual cells of the thallophytes (like fungi ) in which the gametes form and the multicellular gametangia with sterile walls of the mosses and vascular plants are referred to as gametangium . In French literature, the term is limited to the latter meaning. In German, the term gametocyst for the gamete container of the thallophytes has not caught on.
Among the mosses and vascular plants ( ferns and seed plants ) the female gametangium is called archegonium , the male antheridium . The gametangia are formed by the gametophyte (→ generation change ).
If the gametes are not released before the sexual process, but the entire gametangia fuse together, one speaks of gametangiogamy . The gametangia can be designed in the same way (isogametangiogamy) or differently (anisogametangiogamy).
The name gametangium was introduced by Eduard Strasburger in 1877 at the same time as the name gamet.