[Taxacom] Lumping and Splitting
jcclark-lists at earthlink.net
Fri Sep 7 08:39:26 CDT 2007
My favorite quote on lumping vs splitting is from E.L. Greene, in his
1905 monograph of Eschscholzia:
"As to the powers of taxonomic discernment, there are a few who, having
before them several related plants, can see, and do see, of their own
discriminative intelligence, the differences that separate them.
"There is a much larger class of those who, in the same case, seem
blinded by the resemblances which these related things so strongly bear
to one another, and cannot see the differences at all distinctly until
some other has pointed out those differences one by one. Then, these too
"There is a third class, consisting of such as can not [sic] see a thing
that is before their eyes and has been pointed out."
As you might imagine, Greene was a splitter, extraordinaire.
Curtis Clark http://www.csupomona.edu/~jcclark/
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