Nomenclator Zoologicus Volume 9 - errors in author names

Chris Lyal C.lyal at NHM.AC.UK
Mon Mar 27 22:44:32 CST 2006

A standard list of authors is what we need, true, but the list must enable synonymies to enable us to match variants (and see where we cannot be sure).  Not only are there different transiterations but authors themselves sometimes spelled their names differently at different times.  There are also some standard (and not-so-standard) abbreviations that have been used.  The botanists have gone down the line to an extent with the botanist database at Harvard University (  I suspect that many of us either maintain our own author lists, or could generate one fairly rapidly, with a standard set of metadata, perhaps using the BiogML schema elements (although I'm not clear that this enables name synonyms).  Anyone fancy hosting such a list?  Anyone doing it already?

	-----Original Message----- 
	From: Taxacom Discussion List on behalf of Frank Krell 
	Sent: Mon 27/03/2006 22:19 
	Subject: Re: [TAXACOM] Nomenclator Zoologicus Volume 9 - errors in author names

	authors of papers published in languages using a non-Latin alphabet mostly occur in two forms in the original paper, a transliteration as preferred by the author himself in an abstract in a language using Latin alphabet, and in the original language which can be transliterated in several standard ways. The way authors transliterate their own names are often rather non-standard, but I tend to respect the author's choice (it is their name after all). However, the spelling to be considered for proper bibliography is the spelling in the main article and not in the abstract.
	As long as we don't have a unified global standard for transliterations (or do we?), the only way of getting a stable nomenclature of author names is creating a standardized list of author names (I would hate it if it neglects the preference of the author, but would reluctantly accept it). Are there any efforts for such a list in the zoological world? ZooBank might develop such a database as it goes along, but the problem are the old authors.
	Dr Frank-T. Krell
	Head, Coleoptera Division
	Editor, Systematic Entomology
	Department of Entomology
	The Natural History Museum
	Cromwell Road
	London SW7 5BD, U.K.
	Tel. +44 (0) 20 7942 5886
	Fax +44 (0) 20 7942 5229
	f.krell at
	-----Original Message-----
	From:   Taxacom Discussion List on behalf of Richard Jensen
	Sent:   Mon 27/03/2006 21:12
	Subject:             Re: [TAXACOM] Nomenclator Zoologicus Volume 9 - errors in author              names
	It seems to me that the proper way to cite the name is the way it appeared in the
	published paper.  That's the only way to ensure consistency.  If we start modifying
	author's names as a function of the language in which we are writing, as opposed to
	the language in which they wrote (or in which the paper was published), we will create
	a horrible mess.
	I see the same problem with pronunciations.  I have noticed that some people insist on
	pronouncing many names according to the language of origin.  What I find interesting
	is that they are invariably selective when doing so.  Many English speakers will
	pronounce "Juan Rodriguez" as if they were speaking Spanish, even if Juan is a third
	generation US citizen who has no trace of a hispanic accent.  But, these same
	individuals make no effort to pronounce my name as it would be spoken in Danish or to
	pronounce Henry Higgin's name as it would be pronounced by someone with a Cockney
	Dick J

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