History of the terms "lumper" & "splitter"

Don McAllister mcall at SUPERAJE.COM
Fri Apr 14 09:29:36 CDT 2000

The Oxford English Dictionary, edited by that worthy Scot, is always a good
place to start.  Under 'lumper' one finds in the older compact edition (4 pp.
per page in microprint):
"One who lumps things together (often with reference to classification, after
Darwin's nonce use).
Darwin 1857 Darwin in Life & letters (1887) II. . 205. It is good to have
hair-splitters and lumpers.

And other later instances are given.  But you might wish to consult later
editions of this august dictionary.

Don McAllister
Perth, Canada

Jim Endersby wrote:

> I am working on a PhD on Joseph Hooker and would be most grateful if anyone
> can tell me the origins of the terms "lumper" and "splitter". They are in
> common use in Britain in the 19th C, but when and where were they first
> used?
> Many thanks
> _______________________________________
> Jim Endersby, Graduate Student
> Department of History and Philosophy of  Science
> University of Cambridge
> Free School Lane, Cambridge, CB2 3RH
> Phone: (01223) 500 284

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