Derivation of "exerge"

Geoff Read at NIWA.CRI.NZ
Tue May 11 14:41:57 CDT 1999

> It's in the example on p11 of the 3rd Zoological code (for recommendation
> 6B). It's apparently a term for what might be called a super-subspecies
> group. But where the heck did "exerge" come from? Various dictionaries
> don't know it.

A term coined early in this century by Roger Verity, Italian lepidopterist,
who believed "[Exerges] always inhabit different land-areas, except in
particular cases, such as large mountain chains and plains, which afford
very different surroundings and climates within the same area; they often
consist in a long chain of races [i.e. clines] stretching even from one
continent to another ..." (quoted (including Kudrna's interpolations) from
Kudrna, O. [1988]: An Annotated Catalogue of the butterflies named by
Roger Verity. J. Lepid. Soc. 21, (1), (1982) [1983]:1+1+1055.). Kudrna
described it as a 'fanciful term.'

The next question is how it ended up enshrined in the ICZN code, but I
think I'll quit while I'm ahead (except to observe it was still in the draft 4th Ed
code of 1995). Many thanks to Jan Haugum via Mary Petersen for their
efforts in tracing it to source.

  Geoff Read < at>

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