Names in titles

Thomas G. Lammers lammers at FMPPR.FMNH.ORG
Mon Mar 3 06:37:26 CST 1997

At 06:56 AM 02-28-97 -0700, richard a fagerlund wrote:
>I would like the opinion of anyone or everyone who describes new taxa.
>The question came up with insects but it probably relevant to any taxa
>zoological or botanical.
>I was told by one reviewer that the name of a new taxa should never
>appear in the title of the paper or even the abstract or introduction.
>The rationale was that the taxa is not officially named until the description
>later in the paper and the name cannot be used until officially described.
>I thought that was a bit silly.

I agree it does seem a bit "premature" to put the name in the title, and so
I personally prefer the common "A new species of ..." title format.  But in
the botanical code, there certainly is no codified prohibition against
titles such as "Archimedes rex, a New Species of Blah-blah ..."   I have
seen both sorts over the years in various places.   Possibly some journals
might prohibit such, simply as editorial sylistic policy, but not the ICBN.
If it's OK with the editor, thank the reviewer for his/her suggestion and do
what you prefer.

Thomas G. Lammers
Department of Botany                     Classification, Nomenclature,
Field Museum of Natural History          Phylogeny and Biogeography
Roosevelt Road at Lake Shore Drive       of the Campanulaceae
Chicago, Illinois 60605-2496 USA

e-mail:     lammers at
voice mail: 312-922-9410 ext. 317
fax:        312-427-2530

"What a big book ...  might be made with all that is known ...  And what a
much bigger book still with all that is not ..."

                                                                --- Jules Verne

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