[Taxacom] Did Linnaeus personally describe taxa?

Paul van Rijckevorsel dipteryx at freeler.nl
Mon Nov 2 05:14:28 CST 2015


Also, it should be kept in mind that in very many cases
Linnaeus did not 'describe' taxa, but just drew up what
we now call a diagnosis. After all, very many taxa were 
long-known (sometimes known for millennia), and had 
been scientifically described well before Linnaeus. In 
such cases, Linnaeus just organized and named them.

But Linnaeus did have the reputation of working very
hard.

Paul

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Dilrukshan Wijesinghe" <dpwijesinghe at yahoo.com>
To: "Taxacom" <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
Sent: Sunday, November 01, 2015 4:29 PM
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Did Linnaeus personally describe taxa?


> What's so improbable about having described 10,000 species, especially if the descriptions are as brief as they are in Linnaeus' case? Francis Walker, perhaps the most prolific of describers in entomology (and clearly one who admired brevity!), is believed to have described 23,506 species.
> In our own time, working to much higher standards, no author could approach these numbers. However, a few thousand species is still evidently not impossible. For example, Norm Platnick has described nearly 2,000 species of spiders - in 2013 the actual number was 1,831, of which 1,828 were considered valid.
> Priyantha
> 
> D. P. Wijesinghe
> dpwijesinghe at yahoo.com
>      From: JF Mate <aphodiinaemate at gmail.com>
> To: Taxacom <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu> 
> Sent: Sunday, November 1, 2015 8:41 AM
> Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Did Linnaeus personally describe taxa?
>   
> I think it would depend on the definition of "did his work on his
> own". I am sure he borrowed a lot of the taxonomic knowledge an
> incorporated it in in a cogent body of work which we now know as
> Linnaean Classification. Also his descriptions are so brief that he
> could probably do 3 over breakfast. So I believe it is possible.
> 
> Best
> 
> Jason
> 
> On 1 November 2015 at 14:09, Andrew Novikoff <novikoffav at gmail.com> wrote:
>> Dear taxacomers,
>> I apologize for my irreligion... but did Linnause really personally
>> describe all his taxa? It is unbelievable if take in consideration that he
>> described about 10 000 only species. If we calculate, he should describe
>> about 3 new species everyday during 10 years. But he should also write the
>> books and travel.
>> Actually I have discussion with my colleague who believe that Linnaeus did
>> all this work by own. While I suggest that there were team of peoples who
>> helped to Linnaeus.
>> Thank you for comments and clarifications!
>> Sincerely, A.
>> --
>> ______________________________________________________________________
>>
>> Dr. Andrew V. Novikoff
>> State Natural History Museum Modern
>> phytomorphology
>> National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine Executive
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