Nymphaeales is an order of plants, which consists of water lilies and other aquatic plants.
This order is considered to be a basal, or early diverging, group of angiosperms. The families of this order are united by being families of aquatic herbs and are known from the fossil record as early as the Lower Cretaceous.
The fossil record consists especially of seeds, and also pollen, stems, leaves, and flowers. It extends back to the Cretaceous.
It is possible that the aquatic plant fossil Archaefructus belongs to this group.
The family Cambombaceae is included within the Nymphaeaceae in the APG II system, but may optionally be recognized separately.
The Cronquist system, of 1981, placed it in subclass Magnoliidae, in class Magnoliopsida [=dicotyledons] of division Magnoliophyta [=angiosperms]. It used this circumscription:
The Thorne system (1992) placed it in superorder Nymphaeanae in subclass Magnoliideae [=dicotyledons] in class Magnoliopsida [=angiosperms]. It used this circumscription:
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