[Taxacom] Use of "nomen invalidum" versus "nomen nudum" in botany

Paul van Rijckevorsel dipteryx at freeler.nl
Tue Sep 6 01:45:40 CDT 2016


This is not that complicated. The 'botanical' Code defines
its own nomenclatural universe, which revolves around
scientific names. To be a scientific name, it needs to be
validly published. If it is not validly published it is not a
name in the sense of the Code.

So, "not validly published" is unambiguous: this concerns
a string that might look like a name, but is not a name.

Conversely, "nomen invalidum" is a contradictio-in-terminis:
it is "a name that is not a name". The use of this is not
recommended.

In zoology "nomen nudum" appears to be used in a wide
sense for not-names. In 'botany', it is defined as a string
(not a name) that failed to become a name for lack of
a description (etc.).

A "nomen illegitimum" is something else entirely, this is a name
(in the sense of the Code), but one that may not be used as
a correct name (or as a basionym for another name).

Paul

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Stephen Thorpe" <stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz>
To: "taxacom" <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>; "Tony Rees" 
<tonyrees49 at gmail.com>
Sent: Tuesday, September 06, 2016 2:33 AM
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Use of "nomen invalidum" versus "nomen nudum" in 
botany


> The issues here are complicated. The term "nomen nudum" strictly speaking 
> refers to a subset of what in zoology can be termed unavailable names. A 
> "nomen nudum" is a "name only", i.e. published without a description, 
> diagnosis or illustration. There are many other ways for a name to be 
> unavailable, particularly so post electronic amendment (e.g. lack of a 
> specified archive in ZooBank registration, etc.) Unfortunately in botany, 
> they don't use the term availability, but instead use validity. I most 
> often see "nomen illegitimum" in botany, rather than anything else. I 
> can't really answer your question directly, but I will try to make the 
> point that definitions in this area are not entirely clear. It is best to 
> define (stipulate) exactly what you mean rather than rely on vague and 
> ambiguous traditional terms, terms which may mean different things to 
> different people.
>
> Stephen
>
> --------------------------------------------
> On Tue, 6/9/16, Tony Rees <tonyrees49 at gmail.com> wrote:
>
> Subject: [Taxacom] Use of "nomen invalidum" versus "nomen nudum" in botany
> To: "taxacom" <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
> Received: Tuesday, 6 September, 2016, 12:08 PM
>
> Dear Taxacomers,
>
> I am seeking some guidance as to the circumstances in which
> either "nomen
> invalidum" or "nomen nudum" might preferably be used in
> botany. In zoology,
> it is customary to use "nomen nudum" for names published
> without e.g. an
> adequate description, desgnatioin of type species for a
> genus, and so on.
> In botany (for example many entries in Index Nominum
> Genericorum) the
> standard wording appears to be "not validly published"
> (?=nomen invalidum)
> which I interpret to coverr the same territory - or possibly
> a superset of
> it. Does this mean that "nomen nudum" is not really a term
> used in botany,
> even though it is included in the glossary to the botanical
> Code?
>
> Any advice appreciated,
>
> Regards - Tony
>
> Tony Rees, New South Wales, Australia
> https://about.me/TonyRees
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