Botanical Author Names
krishtalkal at CLP2.CLPGH.ORG
Thu Nov 18 09:00:13 CST 1993
Just two comments from a paleontologist to add to the fray:
1. Chapman is right, of course. Zoology long abandoned the
citation of "pre-ex" authors, restricting the ordinary citation to the last
reviser who effected a taxonomic/nomenclatural alteration of some sort. The
list of author citations comprising a taxon's history is reserved for the
kickoff to the complete taxonomic revision of that taxon.
2. The basic problem with botany in this regard is the "sheet".
Zoology, with its tiny specimen labels, has been driven to taxonomic efficiency
by necessity: the tiny label has no room for endless annotations by
every Tom, Dick and Harriet who looks at a specimen. Botany, with its mounting
sheets, provides enough room for endless annotations, the Declaration of
Independence, and the weekend's football scores. Were Swift still alive and
inclined to "A Modest Proposal", he would suggest that Botany rein in these
annotating urges, or shrink its mounting sheets to Lilliputian dimensions. He
would, of course, be joking.
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