Basionym/Protologue -- One more question

Geoff Read at NIWA.CRI.NZ
Tue Jul 2 08:25:32 CDT 2002

Richard Pyle wrote:
> Xxxxxx yyyyyy Jones (1805)
> Zzzzzz yyyyyy (Jones) Smith 1810

> Related to this is how we each tend to use the word "name".  I tend to use
> it in terms of the "terminal" epithet only; not the full-context
> combination.  For example, using the above, I would say there is only one
> "name" (yyyyyy), the Basionym of which places it in the context of genus
> Xxxxxx; and the later Smith (1810) publication places the *same* name in the
> context of Genus Zzzzzz.  However, I know many others use the word "name" in
> reference to the full-context name, and would thus interpret the above as *two
> separate* 'names'. Perhaps this semantic difference lies at the heart of a lot
> of the confusion?

My take is that the name (and basionym) ought to be the whole binominal. It's
just a label, but  it's the fundamental, the originating LABEL for the concept
(whatever concept the type represents), and therein lies its usefulness.  Any
later binominal combinations are modifiers, and opinions, obviously not
'separate' names, and much less important (in databasing). Alternatively you
might regard yyyyyy Jones (1805) as the "name"  but  not just yyyyyy.  Note
that both of those fall over when Jones, who happened to be working on the
Galapagos fauna/flora, named five species in 1805 with the epithet
'galapagensis'.  (An echo of the uninominal debate).


  Geoff Read < at>

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