[Taxacom] Type specimen

Doug Yanega dyanega at ucr.edu
Fri May 17 20:23:27 CDT 2013

On 5/17/13 6:05 PM, Stephen Thorpe wrote:
> Actually, no! There can be no type series for Homo sapiens. Linnaeus 
> split it up into named variants, which left no room for "typical" H. 
> sapiens. No specimens qualify for type status. The availability of the 
> name is unaffected, however ...
Homo sapiens sapiens is defined via all the descriptions (from something 
like 5 pages of text) NOT explicitly assigned to any of his 6 
availably-named subgroups; as such, even though there were no explicitly 
included specimens, his own person is implied as the specimen so 
described. This is the basic conclusion that David Notton has put forth 
elsewhere, with the exception that he claimed Linnaeus was a lectotype 
(which is impossible, given that there were no other included 
specimens). If one chooses to claim that every human being Linnaeus met 
during his lifetime was a syntype, then the same logic would apply to 
every cat, dog, horse, chicken, sparrow, etc. that Linnaeus saw prior to 
publishing. That's why the wording of 72.4 is so important; it does not 
matter how many humans Linnaeus saw in his leftime, only how many he 
included when writing his description - and since most of those were 
described as variants, they are also (by definition) excluded. The only 
specimen left to represent saapiens sapiens is Linnaeus.

Doug Yanega      Dept. of Entomology       Entomology Research Museum
Univ. of California, Riverside, CA 92521-0314     skype: dyanega
phone: (951) 827-4315 (disclaimer: opinions are mine, not UCR's)
   "There are some enterprises in which a careful disorderliness
         is the true method" - Herman Melville, Moby Dick, Chap. 82

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