DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.1550.1.2

Genitives of species and subspecies nomina derived from personal names should not be emended

ALAIN DUBOIS

Abstract


Article 31 of the Code allows to form a species or subspecies from a personal name, using a nomen in the genitive case. Some zoologists have construed this rule as meaning that such nomina should always end in -i if dedicated to a man, in -ae if dedicated to a woman, in -arum to several women and in -orum to several persons including at least one man. They therefore proposed emendations to those nomina which they considered ill-formed under this interpretation. A detailed analysis shows that the latter is wrong, and that the original spelling (including its ending) of any new nomen based on a personal name should not be modified (except possibly in a few very rare cases). New spellings proposed by some authors for the reasons above are unjustified emendations, with their own authors and dates. Some problems related to homonymy in nomina based on personal names are also discussed. In conclusion, I propose a rewording of a few Articles of the Code to remedy some of the ambiguities pointed to by this analysis.

Keywords


Code, nomenclature, spelling, personal name, gender, genitive, stem, ending, emendation, homonymy

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