[Taxacom] Hector of Scotland

Geoff Read gread at actrix.gen.nz
Sat Apr 25 22:02:28 CDT 2009

I come in late but ... FWIW  our predecessors may have known best in this
case.  They certainly had more Latin knowledge.

The early New Zealand geologist and zoologist James Hector was Scottish
born.   Thus his likely Gaelic-derived surname can only be dubiously
linked to the coincidental Greek hero first name when both are
transliterated to the same letter  sequence in English.


 "The second derivation [of Hector] is from the early Gaelic
(Irish-Scottish)  'Eachdonn', meaning 'the dark horse', and therefore
presumably a nickname. In both  Scotland and Ireland this spelling was
anglicised to 'Ecktor' or 'Hector'. The latter is  now the recognised
spelling of the name, which is principally recorded in Northern 

From: "Michael Heads" <michael.heads at yahoo.com>
Sent: Thursday, April 23, 2009 11:59 PM

An amusing story: in 1996 while revising New Zealand Olearia I found that
the old, well-known name O. hectori is 'incorrect' - Cicero would have
always used hectoris for the genitive of the famous hero's name.

Geoffrey B. Read, Ph.D.
Wellington, NEW ZEALAND
gread at actrix.gen.nz

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