Binomial nomenclature ("two-term naming system") also called binominal nomenclature ("two-name naming system") or binary nomenclature, is a formal system of naming species of living things by giving each a name composed of two parts, both of which use Latin grammatical forms, although they can be based on words from other languages. Such a name is called a binomial name (which may be shortened to just "binomial"), a binomen, binominal name or a scientific name; more informally it is also called a Latin name. The first part of the name – the generic name – identifies the genus to which the species belongs, while the second part – the specific name or specific epithet – identifies the species within the genus. For example, humans belong to the genus Homo and within this genus to the species Homo sapiens. Tyrannosaurus rex is probably the most widely known binomial. The formal introduction of this system of naming species is credited to Carl Linnaeus, effectively beginning with his work Species Plantarum in 1753. But Gaspard Bauhin, in as early as 1623, had introduced in his book Pinax theatri botanici (English, Illustrated exposition of plants) many names of genera that were later adopted by Linnaeus.
The application of binomial nomenclature is now governed by various internationally agreed codes of rules, of which the two most important are the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (ICZN) for animals and the International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants (ICNafp). Although the general principles underlying binomial nomenclature are common to these two codes, there are some differences, both in the terminology they use and in their precise rules.
In modern usage, the first letter of the first part of the name, the genus, is always capitalized in writing, while that of the second part is not, even when derived from a proper noun such as the name of a person or place. Similarly, both parts are italicized when a binomial name occurs in normal text (or underlined in handwriting). Thus the binomial name of the annual phlox (named after botanist Thomas Drummond) is now written as Phlox drummondii.
In scientific works, the authority for a binomial name is usually given, at least when it is first mentioned, and the date of publication may be specified.
The name is composed of two word-forming elements: "bi", a Latin prefix for two, and "-nomial", relating to a term or terms. The word "binomium" was used in Medieval Latin to mean a two-term expression in mathematics.
Prior to the adoption of the modern binomial system of naming species, a scientific name consisted of a generic name combined with a specific name that was from one to several words long. Together they formed a system of polynomial nomenclature. These names had two separate functions. First, to designate or label the species, and second, to be a diagnosis or description; however these two goals were eventually found to be incompatible. In a simple genus, containing only two species, it was easy to tell them apart with a one-word genus and a one-word specific name; but as more species were discovered the names necessarily became longer and unwieldy, for instance Plantago foliis ovato-lanceolatus pubescentibus, spica cylindrica, scapo tereti ("Plantain with pubescent ovate-lanceolate leaves, a cylindric spike and a terete scape"), which we know today as Plantago media.
Such "polynomial names" may sometimes look like binomials, but are significantly different. For example, Gerard's herbal (as amended by Johnson) describes various kinds of spiderwort: "The first is called Phalangium ramosum, Branched Spiderwort; the second, Phalangium non ramosum, Unbranched Spiderwort. The other ... is aptly termed Phalangium Ephemerum Virginianum, Soon-Fading Spiderwort of Virginia". The Latin phrases are short descriptions, rather than identifying labels.
The Bauhins, in particular Caspar Bauhin (1560–1624), took some important steps towards the binomial system, by pruning the Latin descriptions, in many cases to two words. The adoption by biologists of a system of strictly binomial nomenclature is due to Swedish botanist and physician Carl von Linné, more commonly known by his Latinized name Carl Linnaeus (1707–1778). It was in his 1753 Species Plantarum that he first began consistently using a one-word "trivial name" together with a generic name in a system of binomial nomenclature. This trivial name is what is now known as a specific epithet (ICNafp) or specific name (ICZN). The Bauhins' genus names were retained in many of these, but the descriptive part was reduced to a single word.
Linnaeus's trivial names introduced an important new idea, namely that the function of a name could simply be to give a species a unique label. This meant that the name no longer need be descriptive; for example both parts could be derived from the names of people. Thus Gerard's Phalangium ephemerum virginianum became Tradescantia virginiana, where the genus name honoured John Tradescant the Younger,[note 1] an English botanist and gardener. A bird in the parrot family was named Psittacus alexandri, meaning "Alexander's parrot", after Alexander the Great whose armies introduced eastern parakeets to Greece. Linnaeus's trivial names were much easier to remember and use than the parallel polynomial names and eventually replaced them.
The value of the binomial nomenclature system derives primarily from its economy, its widespread use, and the uniqueness and stability of names it generally favors:
Binomial nomenclature for species has the effect that when a species is moved from one genus to another, sometimes the specific name or epithet must be changed as well. This may happen because the specific name is already used in the new genus, or to agree in gender with the new genus. Some biologists have argued for the combination of the genus name and specific epithet into a single unambiguous name, or for the use of uninomials (as used in nomenclature of ranks above species).
Because binomials are unique only within a kingdom, it is possible for two or more species to share the same binomial if they occur in different kingdoms. At least five instances of such binomial duplication occur.
Nomenclature (including binomial nomenclature) is not the same as classification, although the two are related. Classification is the ordering of items into groups based on similarities or differences; in biological classification, species are one of the kinds of item to be classified. In principle, the names given to species could be completely independent of their classification. This is not the case for binomial names, since the first part of a binomial is the name of the genus into which the species is placed. Above the rank of genus, binomial nomenclature and classification are partly independent; for example, a species retains its binomial name if it is moved from one family to another or from one order to another, unless it better fits a different genus in the same or different family, or it is split from its old genus and placed in a newly created genus. The independence is only partial since the names of families and other higher taxa are usually based on genera.
Taxonomy includes both nomenclature and classification. Its first stages (sometimes called "alpha taxonomy") are concerned with finding, describing and naming species of living or fossil organisms. Binomial nomenclature is thus an important part of taxonomy as it is the system by which species are named. Taxonomists are also concerned with classification, including its principles, procedures and rules.
A complete binomial name is always treated grammatically as if it were a phrase in the Latin language (hence the common use of the term "Latin name" for a binomial name). However, the two parts of a binomial name can each be derived from a number of sources, of which Latin is only one. These include:
The first part of the name, which identifies the genus, must be a word which can be treated as a Latin singular noun in the nominative case. It must be unique within each kingdom, but can be repeated between kingdoms. Thus Huia recurvata is an extinct species of plant, found as fossils in Yunnan, China, whereas Huia masonii is a species of frog found in Java, Indonesia.
The second part of the name, which identifies the species within the genus, is also treated grammatically as a Latin word. It can have one of a number of forms:
Whereas the first part of a binomial name must be unique within a kingdom, the second part is quite commonly used in two or more genera (as is shown by examples of hodgsonii above). The full binomial name must be unique within a kingdom.
From the early 19th century onwards it became ever more apparent that a body of rules was necessary to govern scientific names. In the course of time these became nomenclature codes. The International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (ICZN) governs the naming of animals, the International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants (ICNafp) that of plants (including cyanobacteria), and the International Code of Nomenclature of Bacteria (ICNB) that of bacteria (including Archaea). Virus names are governed by the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV), a taxonomic code, which determines taxa as well as names. These codes differ in certain ways, e.g.:
|Code||Full name||First part||Second part|
|ICZN||species name, binomen, binominal name||generic name, genus name||specific name|
|ICNafp||species name, binary combination, binomial (name)||generic name||specific epithet|
Unifying the different codes into a single code, the "BioCode", has been suggested, although implementation is not in sight. (There is also a code in development for a different system of classification which does not use ranks, but instead names clades. This is called the PhyloCode.)
As noted above, there are some differences between the codes in the way in which binomials can be formed; for example the ICZN allows both parts to be the same, while the ICNafp does not. Another difference is in the way in which personal names are used in forming specific names or epithets. The ICNafp sets out precise rules by which a personal name is to be converted to a specific epithet. In particular, names ending in a consonant (but not "er") are treated as first being converted into Latin by adding "-ius" (for a man) or "-ia" (for a woman), and then being made genitive (i.e. meaning "of that person or persons"). This produces specific epithets like lecardii for Lecard (male), wilsoniae for Wilson (female), and brauniarum for the Braun sisters. By contrast the ICZN does not require the intermediate creation of a Latin form of a personal name, allowing the genitive ending to added directly to the personal name. This explains the difference between the names of the plant Magnolia hodgsonii and the bird Anthus hodgsoni. Furthermore, the ICNafp requires names not published in the form required by the code to be corrected to conform to it, whereas the ICZN is more protective of the form used by the original author.
By tradition, the binomial names of species are usually typeset in italics; for example, Homo sapiens. Generally, the binomial should be printed in a font style different from that used in the normal text; for example, "Several more Homo sapiens fossils were discovered." When handwritten, a binomial name should be underlined; for example, Homo sapiens.
The first part of the binomial, the genus name, is always written with an initial capital letter. In current usage, the second part is never written with an initial capital. Older sources, particularly botanical works published before the 1950s, use a different convention. If the second part of the name is derived from a proper noun, e.g. the name of a person or place, a capital letter was used. Thus the modern form Berberis darwinii was written as Berberis Darwinii. A capital was also used when the name is formed by two nouns in apposition, e.g. Panthera Leo or Centaurea Cyanus.[note 3]
When used with a common name, the scientific name often follows in parentheses, although this varies with publication. For example, "The house sparrow (Passer domesticus) is decreasing in Europe."
The binomial name should generally be written in full. The exception to this is when several species from the same genus are being listed or discussed in the same paper or report, or the same species is mentioned repeatedly; in which case the genus is written in full when it is first used, but may then be abbreviated to an initial (and a period/full stop). For example, a list of members of the genus Canis might be written as "Canis lupus, C. aureus, C. simensis". In rare cases, this abbreviated form has spread to more general use; for example, the bacterium Escherichia coli is often referred to as just E. coli, and Tyrannosaurus rex is perhaps even better known simply as T. rex, these two both often appearing in this form in popular writing even where the full genus name has not already been given.
The abbreviation "sp." is used when the actual specific name cannot or need not be specified. The abbreviation "spp." (plural) indicates "several species". These abbreviations are not italicised (or underlined). For example: "Canis sp." means "an unspecified species of the genus Canis", while "Canis spp." means "two or more species of the genus Canis". (The abbreviations "sp." and "spp." can easily be confused with the abbreviations "ssp." (zoology) or "subsp." (botany), plurals "sspp." or "subspp.", referring to one or more subspecies. See trinomen (zoology) and infraspecific name.)
The abbreviation "cf." (i.e. confer in Latin) is used to compare individuals/taxa with known/described species. Conventions for use of the "cf." qualifier vary. In paleontology, it is typically used when the identification is not confirmed. For example, "Corvus cf. nasicus" was used to indicate "a fossil bird similar to the Cuban crow but not certainly identified as this species". In molecular systematics papers, "cf." may be used to indicate one or more undescribed species assumed related to a described species. For example, in a paper describing the phylogeny of small benthic freshwater fish called darters, five undescribed putative species (Ozark, Sheltowee, Wildcat, Ihiyo, and Mamequit darters), notable for brightly colored nuptial males with distinctive color patterns, were referred to as "Etheostoma cf. spectabile" because they had been viewed as related to, but distinct from, Etheostoma spectabile (orangethroat darter). This view was supported in varying degrees by DNA analysis. The somewhat informal use of taxa names with qualifying abbreviations is referred to as open nomenclature and it is not subject to strict usage codes.
In some contexts the dagger symbol ("†") may be used before or after the binomial name to indicate that the species is extinct.
In scholarly texts, at least the first or main use of the binomial name is usually followed by the "authority" – a way of designating the scientist(s) who first published the name. The authority is written in slightly different ways in zoology and botany. For names governed by the ICZN the surname is usually written in full together with the date (normally only the year) of publication. The ICZN recommends that the "original author and date of a name should be cited at least once in each work dealing with the taxon denoted by that name." For names governed by the ICNafp the name is generally reduced to a standard abbreviation and the date omitted. The International Plant Names Index maintains an approved list of botanical author abbreviations. Historically, abbreviations were used in zoology too.
When the original name is changed, e.g. the species is moved to a different genus, both codes use parentheses around the original authority; the ICNafp also requires the person who made the change to be given. In the ICNafp, the original name is then called the basionym. Some examples:
Binomial nomenclature, as described here, is a system for naming species. Implicitly it includes a system for naming genera, since the first part of the name of the species is a genus name. In a classification system based on ranks there are also ways of naming ranks above the level of genus and below the level of species. Ranks above genus (e.g., family, order, class) receive one-part names, which are conventionally not written in italics. Thus the house sparrow, Passer domesticus, belongs to the family Passeridae. Family names are normally based on genus names, although the endings used differ between zoology and botany.
Ranks below species receive three-part names, conventionally written in italics like the names of species. There are significant differences between the ICZN and the ICNafp. In zoology, the only rank below species is subspecies and the name is written simply as three parts (a trinomen). Thus one of the subspecies of the olive-backed pipit is Anthus hodgsoni berezowskii. In botany, there are many ranks below species and although the name itself is written in three parts, a "connecting term" (not part of the name) is needed to show the rank. Thus the American black elder is Sambucus nigra subsp. canadensis; the white-flowered form of the ivy-leaved cyclamen is Cyclamen hederifolium f. albiflorum.
The 10th edition of Systema Naturae is a book written by Swedish naturalist Carolus Linnaeus and published in two volumes in 1758 and 1759, which marks the starting point of zoological nomenclature. In it, Linnaeus introduced binomial nomenclature for animals, something he had already done for plants in his 1753 publication of Species Plantarum.Blood parrot cichlid
The blood parrot cichlid (or more commonly and formally known as parrot cichlid; no binomial nomenclature) is a hybrid thought to be between the midas and the redhead cichlid, although the true parent species has not confirmed by breeders. The fish was first created in Taiwan around 1986. Blood parrots should not be confused with other parrot cichlids or salt water parrotfish (family Scaridae).Because this hybrid cichlid has various anatomical deformities, controversy exists over the ethics of creating the blood parrot. One deformity is its mouth, which has only a narrow vertical opening. This makes blood parrots somewhat harder to feed and potentially vulnerable to malnutrition.Carl Linnaeus bibliography
The bibliography of Carl Linnaeus includes academic works about botany, zoology, nomenclature and taxonomy written by the Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus (1707–1778). Linnaeus laid the foundations for the modern scheme of binomial nomenclature and is known as the father of modern taxonomy. His most famous works is Systema Naturae which is considered as the starting point for zoological nomenclature together with Species Plantarum which is internationally accepted as the beginning of modern botanical nomenclature.Epithet
An epithet (from Greek: ἐπίθετον epitheton, neuter of ἐπίθετος epithetos, "attributed, added") is a byname, or a descriptive term (word or phrase), accompanying or occurring in place of a name and having entered common usage. It has various shades of meaning when applied to seemingly real or fictitious people, divinities, objects, and binomial nomenclature. It can also be a descriptive title: for example, Pallas Athena, Alfred the Great, Suleiman the Magnificent or Władysław I the Elbow-high.
In contemporary use, epithet often refers to an abusive, defamatory, or derogatory phrase, such as a racial or animal epithet. This use as a euphemism is criticized by Martin Manser and other proponents of linguistic prescription.François Marie Daudin
François Marie Daudin (29 August 1776 in Paris – 30 November 1803 in Paris) was a French zoologist.
With legs paralyzed by childhood disease, he studied physics and natural history, but ended up being devoted to the latter.
Daudin wrote Traité élémentaire et complet d'Ornithologie (Complete and Elementary Treatise of Ornithology) in 1799–1800. It was one of the first modern handbooks of ornithology, combining Linnean binomial nomenclature with the anatomical and physiological descriptions of Buffon. While an excellent beginning, it was never completed.
In 1800, he also published Recueil de mémoires et de notes sur des espèces inédites ou peu connues de mollusques, de vers et de zoophytes (Collection of memories and notes on new or little-known species of molluscs, worms and zoophytes).
Daudin found his greatest success in herpetology. He published Histoire naturelle des reinettes, des grenouilles et des crapauds (Natural history of tree frogs, frogs and toads) in 1802, and Histoire naturelle, générale et particulière des reptiles (Natural History of Reptiles) (8 volumes) in 1802–1803. This latter work contained descriptions of 517 species, many for the first time, based on examining over 1100 specimens.
He was assisted by his wife Adèle, who drew the illustrations. Although his books were commercial failures the couple did not live in poverty. She died of tuberculosis in early 1804, and he followed shortly thereafter, not yet 30 years old.Gaspard Bauhin
Gaspard Bauhin or Caspar Bauhin (Latin: Casparus Bauhinus; 17 January 1560 – 5 December 1624), was a Swiss botanist whose Phytopinax (1596) described thousands of plants and classified them in a manner that draws comparisons to the later binomial nomenclature of Linnaeus. He was a disciple of the famous Italian physician Girolamo Mercuriale and he also worked on human anatomical nomenclature.
Linnaeus honored the Bauhin brothers Gaspard and Jean in the genus name Bauhinia.Genera Plantarum
Genera Plantarum is a publication of Swedish naturalist Carl Linnaeus (1707–1778). The first edition was issued in Leiden, 1737. The fifth edition served as a complementary volume to Species Plantarum (1753). Article 13 of the International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants states that "Generic names that appear in Linnaeus' Species Plantarum ed. 1 (1753) and ed. 2 (1762–63) are associated with the first subsequent description given under those names in Linnaeus' Genera Plantarum ed. 5 (1754) and ed. 6 (1764)." This defines the starting point for nomenclature of most groups of plants.The first edition of Genera Plantarum contains brief descriptions of the 935 plant genera that were known to Linnaeus at that time. It is dedicated to Herman Boerhaave, a Leiden physician who introduced Linnaeus to George Clifford and the medico-botanical Dutch establishment of the day. Genera Plantarum employed his “sexual system” of classification, in which plants are grouped according to the number of stamens and pistils in the flower. Genera Plantarum was revised several times by Linnaeus, the fifth edition being published in August 1754 (eds. 3 and 4 were not edited by Linnaeus) and linked to the first edition of Species Plantarum. Over the 16 years that passed between the publication of the first and fifth editions the number of genera listed had increased from 935 to 1105.
Linnaeus established the system of binomial nomenclature through the widespread acceptance of his list of plants in the 1753 edition of Species Plantarum, which is now taken as the starting point for all botanical nomenclature. Genera Plantarum was an integral part of this first stepping stone towards a universal standardised biological nomenclature.Genus
A genus (, pl. genera ) is a taxonomic rank used in the biological classification of living and fossil organisms, as well as viruses, in biology. In the hierarchy of biological classification, genus comes above species and below family. In binomial nomenclature, the genus name forms the first part of the binomial species name for each species within the genus.
E.g. Panthera leo (lion) and Panthera onca (jaguar) are two species within the genus Panthera. Panthera is a genus within the family Felidae.The composition of a genus is determined by a taxonomist. The standards for genus classification are not strictly codified, so different authorities often produce different classifications for genera. There are some general practices used, however, including the idea that a newly defined genus should fulfill these three criteria to be descriptively useful:
monophyly – all descendants of an ancestral taxon are grouped together (i.e. phylogenetic analysis should clearly demonstrate both monophyly and validity as a separate lineage).
reasonable compactness – a genus should not be expanded needlessly; and
distinctness – with respect to evolutionarily relevant criteria, i.e. ecology, morphology, or biogeography; DNA sequences are a consequence rather than a condition of diverging evolutionary lineages except in cases where they directly inhibit gene flow (e.g. postzygotic barriers).Moreover, genera should be composed of phylogenetic units of the same kind as other (analogous) genera.Latinisation of names
Latinisation or Latinization is the practice of rendering a non-Latin name (or word) in a Latin style. It is commonly found with historical personal names, with toponyms, and in the standard binomial nomenclature of the life sciences. It goes further than romanisation, which is the transliteration of a word to the Latin alphabet from another script (e.g. Cyrillic).
This was often done in the classical to emulate Latin authors, or to present a more impressive image.
In a scientific context, the main purpose of Latinisation may be to produce a name which is internationally consistent.
Latinisation may be carried out by:
transforming the name into Latin sounds (e.g. Geber for Jabir), or
adding Latinate suffixes to the end of a name (e.g. Meibomius for Meibom), or
translating a name with a specific meaning into Latin (e.g. Venator for Italian Cacciatore; both mean 'hunter'), or
choosing a new name based on some attribute of the person (e.g. Daniel Santbech became Noviomagus, possibly from the Latin (actually Latinised Gaulish for 'new field') name for the town of Nijmegen).Linnaea
Linnaea is a plant genus in the family Caprifoliaceae (the honeysuckle family). Until 2013, the genus included a single species, Linnaea borealis. In 2013, on the basis of molecular phylogenetic evidence, the genus was expanded to include species formerly placed in Abelia (excluding section Zabelia), Diabelia, Dipelta, Kolkwitzia and Vesalea.
Linnaea borealis was a favorite of Carl Linnaeus, founder of the modern system of binomial nomenclature, for whom the genus was named.Nikolaus Poda von Neuhaus
Nikolaus Poda von Neuhaus (4 October 1723 – 29 April 1798) was an Austrian entomologist. He was born and died in Vienna.
Von Neuhaus was the author of Insecta Musei Graecensis (1761), the first purely entomological work to follow the binomial nomenclature of Carl Linnaeus.Philosophia Botanica
Philosophia Botanica ("Botanical Philosophy", ed. 1, Stockholm & Amsterdam, 1751.) was published by the Swedish naturalist and physician Carl Linnaeus (1707–1778) who greatly influenced the development of botanical taxonomy and systematics in the 18th and 19th centuries. It is "the first textbook of descriptive systematic botany and botanical Latin". It also contains Linnaeus's first published description of his binomial nomenclature.
Philosophia Botanica represents a maturing of Linnaeus's thinking on botany and its theoretical foundations, being an elaboration of ideas first published in his Fundamenta Botanica (1736) and Critica Botanica (1737), and set out in a similar way as a series of stark and uncompromising principles (aphorismen). The book also establishes a basic botanical terminology.
The following principle §79 demonstrates the style of presentation and Linnaeus's method of introducing his ideas.
A detailed analysis of the work is given in Frans Stafleu's Linnaeus and the Linnaeans, pp. 25–78.Species Plantarum
Species Plantarum (Latin for "The Species of Plants") is a book by Carl Linnaeus, originally published in 1753, which lists every species of plant known at the time, classified into genera. It is the first work to consistently apply binomial names and was the starting point for the naming of plants.Svenska Spindlar
The book Svenska Spindlar or Aranei Svecici (Swedish and Latin, respectively, for "Swedish spiders") was one of the major works of the Swedish arachnologist and entomologist Carl Alexander Clerck and appeared in Stockholm in the year 1757. It was the first comprehensive book on the spiders of Sweden and one of the first regional monographs of a group of animals worldwide. The full title of the work was Svenska Spindlar uti sina hufvud-slägter indelte samt under några och sextio särskildte arter beskrefne och med illuminerade figurer uplyste – Aranei Svecici, descriptionibus et figuris æneis illustrati, ad genera subalterna redacti, speciebus ultra LX determinati, ("Swedish spiders into their main genera separated, and as sixty and a few particular species described and with illuminated figures illustrated") and included 162 pages of text (eight pages were unpaginated) and 6 colour plates. It was published in Swedish, with a Latin translation printed in a slightly smaller font below the Swedish text.
Clerck described in detail 67 species of Swedish spiders, and for the first time in a zoological work consistently applied binomial nomenclature as proposed by Carl Linnaeus and used for the first time for botanical names in his 1753 work Species Plantarum, and which he presented in 1758 in the 10th edition of his work Systema Naturae for more than 4,000 animal species.
Svenska Spindlar is the first zoological work to make systematic use of binomial nomenclature, and the only pre-Linnaean source to be recognised as a taxonomic authority for such names.Talpini
Talpini is a tribe, in the scientific classification system of binomial nomenclature. It encapsulates a group of mammals known as Old World Moles. It is a division of the subfamily Talpinae.Taxon
In biology, a taxon (plural taxa; back-formation from taxonomy) is a group of one or more populations of an organism or organisms seen by taxonomists to form a unit. Although neither is required, a taxon is usually known by a particular name and given a particular ranking, especially if and when it is accepted or becomes established. It is not uncommon, however, for taxonomists to remain at odds over what belongs to a taxon and the criteria used for inclusion. If a taxon is given a formal scientific name, its use is then governed by one of the nomenclature codes specifying which scientific name is correct for a particular grouping.
Although preceded by Linnaeus's system in Systema Naturae (10th edition, 1758) and unpublished work by Bernard and Antoine Laurent de Jussieu, the notion of a unit-based "natural system" of biological classification was first made widely available in 1805 through the publication, as the introduction to the third edition of Jean-Baptiste Lamarck's Flore françoise, of Augustin Pyramus de Candolle's Principes élémentaires de botanique, an exposition of a system for the "natural classification" of plants. Since then, systematists have striven to construct an accurate classification encompassing the diversity of life; today, a "good" or "useful" taxon is commonly taken to be one that reflects evolutionary relationships.Many modern systematists, such as advocates of phylogenetic nomenclature, use cladistic methods that require taxa to be monophyletic (all descendants of some ancestor). Their basic unit, therefore, is the clade rather than the taxon. Similarly, among those contemporary taxonomists working with the traditional Linnean (binomial) nomenclature, few propose taxa they know to be paraphyletic. An example of a well-established taxon that is not also a clade is the class Reptilia, the reptiles; birds are descendants of reptiles but are not included in the Reptilia.The Linnaeus Museum
The Linnaeus Museum (Swedish:Linnémuseet) is a biographical museum in the Linnaean Garden in Uppsala, Sweden, dedicated to the 18th century botanist Carl Linnaeus. It is run by the Swedish Linnaeus Society. The house was built by Olaus Rudbeck in 1693 and served as official residence for employees at Uppsala University from the latter part of the 17th century until 1934. Its last occupant was musician Hugo Alfvén. Between 1743 and 1778, Carl Linnaeus resided in the building, and in 1937 it was re-made into a museum of Linnaeus personal and professional life. Furniture, household items and textiles, which belonged to the family, are exhibited together with Linnaeus personal medicinal cabinet, insect cabinet and herbarium.Carl Linnaeus was born in Småland in 1707 but started studying at Uppsala University in 1730, and he later became professor of botany and principal at the same university. He is known for formalising the modern system of naming organisms, creating the modern binomial nomenclature.Trinomen
In zoological nomenclature, a trinomen (plural: trinomina), trinominal name, or ternary name, refers to the name of a subspecies. For example: "Gorilla gorilla gorilla" (Savage, 1847) for the western lowland gorilla (genus Gorilla, species western gorilla). Also, "Bison bison bison" (Linnaeus, 1758) for the plains bison (genus Bison, species American bison).
A trinomen is a name with three parts: generic name, specific name and subspecific name. The first two parts alone form the binomen or species name. All three names are typeset in italics, and only the first letter of the generic name is capitalised. No indicator of rank is included: in zoology, subspecies is the only rank below that of species. For example: "Buteo jamaicensis borealis is one of the subspecies of the red-tailed hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)."
In a taxonomic publication, a name is incomplete without an author citation and publication details. This indicates who published the name, in what publication, and the date of the publication.
For example: "Phalacrocorax carbo novaehollandiae (Stephens, 1826)" denotes a subspecies of the great cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo) introduced by James Francis Stephens in 1826 under the subspecies name novaehollandiae ("of New Holland").
If the generic and specific name have already been mentioned in the same paragraph, they are often abbreviated to initial letters. For example one might write: "The great cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo has a distinct subspecies in Australasia, the black shag P. c. novaehollandiae".
While binomial nomenclature came into being and immediately gained widespread acceptance in the mid-18th century, it was not until the early 20th century that the current unified standard of trinominal nomenclature was agreed upon. This became the standard mainly because of tireless promotion by Elliott Coues – even though trinomina in the modern usage were pioneered in 1828 by Carl Friedrich Bruch and around 1850 was widely used especially by Hermann Schlegel and John Cassin. As late as the 1930s, the use of trinomina was not fully established in all fields of zoology. Thus, when referring especially European works of the preceding era, the nomenclature used is usually not in accord with contemporary standards.Étienne Louis Geoffroy
Étienne Louis Geoffroy (October 12, 1725 – August 12, 1810) was a French entomologist and pharmacist. He was born in Paris and died in Soissons. He followed the binomial nomenclature of Carl von Linné and devoted himself mainly to beetles.
Geoffroy was the author of Histoire abrégée des Insectes qui se trouvent aux environs de Paris. Paris : Durand Vol. 1 8 + 523 pp. 10 pls (1762) and co-author with Antoine François of Entomologia Parisiensis, sive, Catalogus insectorum quae in agro Parisiensi reperiuntur ... (1785).