Latin names versus scientific names [was: So much for nomenclatural stability]

Ron at Ron at
Thu Mar 10 00:57:12 CST 2005

----- Original Message -----
From: Lyn.Craven at CSIRO.AU
Subject: Re: Latin names versus scientific names [was: So much for
nomenclatural stability]

It is a big difference.

Science is what we aim to do, and the subjects of our studies have
internationally recognised, and regulated, scientific names.

That nomenclature, whether Latin, Japanese, or Turkish is involved, I
accept, but there should be a distinction between "..........(insert
language)...... name"  and "scientific name"


Yes, there is a big difference.  The various codes present a  _stylistic_
methodology for the _grammatical composition_ of scientific epithets
(=scientific nomenclature).  But the product, the code regulated scientific
_identifier_, is not simply as stylized (=Latinized)  name.   It is a
nomenclatorial tool by which the evolutionary relationships of organisms are
communicated among taxonomists.

Family, genus, species, subspecies (or variety).   THAT is _not_ a "name".
It is a technical scientific identifier differentiating X organism from all
others -- an evolutionary hierarchal short hand.  We use the term "name"
every day when we refer to this process/product, but this use of "name" is
an inaccurate type of slang.  My _name_ is Ronald Richard Gatrelle.  My
latinized _scientific identifier_ is Homo sapiens.

Yes, there is a big difference.

If it were not for taxonomy, there would be no need for nomenclature.  These
two things are all to often treated like mutually exclusive things.
Nomenclature is simply the language of taxonomy.  They are insuperable and
mutually dependant.

Ron Gatrelle

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