[Taxacom] "Natural" groups

Barry Roth barry_roth at yahoo.com
Tue Dec 21 12:44:11 CST 2010

Use of the term "natural group" goes back a long way, to before the art or science of estimating phylogenetic relationships was very far advanced. It would be interesting to see some definitions from, say, the 1920s. Has that term always implied monophyletic (in the broad sense, paraphyly having become a concern later) groups?


On Dec 21, 2010, at 8:11 AM, Kim van der Linde <kim at kimvdlinde.com> wrote:

> On 12/21/2010 12:25 AM, Stephen Thorpe wrote:
>>> All paraphyletic taxa are unnatural
>> yep, true pretty much by definition
> Yeah if you take that taxa should be representative of evolutionary 
> history. Which is arguable. If it is based on evolutionary similarity, 
> major changes in a single branch make it far more logical to have 
> paraphyletic groups. And in a sense, more natural. It just depends on 
> how you define natural.
> Kim
> -- 
> http://www.kimvdlinde.com
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