Autonym hierarchy

Thomas G. Lammers lammers at FMPPR.FMNH.ORG
Mon Jul 7 06:05:51 CDT 1997

At 11:51 PM 07-03-97 -0700, Laurie Adams wrote:
>I have come across a nomenclatural situation that seems not to be covered
>by the ICBN, except by implication.
>An author creates an autonym by validly publishing a new infrageneric taxon
>of a particular rank with a type different from that of the genus - say,
>for argument, a new series name. Can one assume that a whole hierarchy of
>autonymous ranks bearing the generic name, e.g. subgenus, section,
>subsection, series and subseries, is simultaneously created, all typified
>by the generic type? Article 2 of the Code seems to imply this, but nowhere
>can I find it explicitly stated.

I would say no, that only the autonymic series name came into existence at
that point.  In order to create an autonymic subgeneric name, a subgeneric
name with a different type would have to bee validly published.  Art. 22.3
says that valid publication of an infrageneric name with a different type
"automatically establishes the *corresponding* autonym."  Art. 2 I read as
more theoretical, in the sense that as many ranks as necessary may be
created to express relationships.  Art. 3.1 establishes the principal ranks
that all species must be be classified into; other ranks, such as series,
subgenus, subclass, tribe, etc., are optional.

Thomas G. Lammers

Classification, Nomenclature, Phylogeny and Biogeography
of the Campanulaceae, s. lat.

Department of Botany
Field Museum of Natural History
Roosevelt Road at Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, Illinois 60605-2496 USA

e-mail:     lammers at
voice mail: 312-922-9410 ext. 317

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