[Taxacom] Some thoughts on the "independence" of nomenclature and taxonomy

Richard Zander Richard.Zander at mobot.org
Tue Apr 21 08:21:47 CDT 2015


A point to consider is that Linnaean taxonomy requires both an epithet and a genus name. The epithet is analytic and is the usual example of "alpha taxonomy" being distinction of species. But the required genus name is synthetic, and requires judgment based on a research program (e.g. evolving Linnaean practice over 250 years). Nomenclature is the structure for discussing and dealing with binomials and can in the simplest case be considered separate from taxonomy.

Stephen is correct that when revisionary analysis is touched on, and, say, heterotypic synonymy is considered, nomenclature responds to varying species circumscriptions and distinctions, yet the practice of nomenclature is not changed (except every few years when wild-eyed shoggoths who consider nomenclature a science wreak havoc on perfectly good rules). 

-------
Richard H. Zander
Missouri Botanical Garden – 4344 Shaw Blvd. – St. Louis – Missouri – 63110 – USA
richard.zander at mobot.org 
Web sites: http://www.mobot.org/plantscience/bfna/bfnamenu.htm and http://www.mobot.org/plantscience/resbot/ 

-----Original Message-----
From: Taxacom [mailto:taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu] On Behalf Of Stephen Thorpe
Sent: Tuesday, April 21, 2015 1:59 AM
To: TAXACOM; Nico Franz
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Some thoughts on the "independence" of nomenclature and taxonomy

An interesting case of "taxonomy vs. nomenclature" is heterotypic synonymy at the species level. To judge a case of such synonymy, one has to judge that one specimen (type specimen) is the same species as another specimen (the other type specimen). The two type specimens could be virtually identical (case A), or quite different (case B). If you think that taxonomy concerns only the circumscription of a species, then case A involves little or no taxonomic judgement, whereas case B requires a lot of such judgement. Case A is pretty objective (but still a case of subjective synonymy), whereas case B depends on "subjective" species circumscriptions. Taxonomy could be done without type based nomenclature, so synonymy would seem to have little to do with taxonomy, and yet it does! It seems impossible to disentangle type based nomenclature with taxonomy!

Stephen


--------------------------------------------
On Tue, 21/4/15, Nico Franz <nico.franz at asu.edu> wrote:

 Subject: [Taxacom] Some thoughts on the "independence" of nomenclature and	taxonomy
 To: "TAXACOM" <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
 Received: Tuesday, 21 April, 2015, 6:38 PM
 
 No more than a quickly assembled
 opinion post. Maybe worth reading to some.
 
 http://taxonbytes.org/thoughts-taxonomically-binding-biological-nomenclature/
 
 Cheers, Nico
 _______________________________________________
 Taxacom Mailing List
 Taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
 http://mailman.nhm.ku.edu/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/taxacom
 The Taxacom Archive back to 1992 may be searched at: http://taxacom.markmail.org
 
 Celebrating 28 years of Taxacom in 2015.
 
_______________________________________________
Taxacom Mailing List
Taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
http://mailman.nhm.ku.edu/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/taxacom
The Taxacom Archive back to 1992 may be searched at: http://taxacom.markmail.org

Celebrating 28 years of Taxacom in 2015.


More information about the Taxacom mailing list