Language for taxonomic names, redux

Arthur Reutenauer arthur.reutenauer at
Sun Feb 26 13:05:49 CET 2017

> Note that being a mere list of words is not enough to disqualify something
> from our list.  Aquitanian, like some other ancient languages, is known
> only from a few hundred proper names embedded in texts written in another
> language (Latin, in fact), and this is probably all the Aquitanian there
> will ever be, yet we allow tagging these names with "xaq".  As Yuri points
> out, there are specific rules for coining new Linnaean names, which is not
> the case for vocabulary lists simpliciter.

  But Aquitanian is not just that list of words, it is an actual
language that is known today only through a few hundred words recorded
in Latin-language sources.  There is no doubt that it was indeed a
full-fledged language, even if its relationship to proto-Basque, or its
status as a distinct language, is not fully understood (and may elude us

> Indeed, the author citation which often follows the taxon name as part of
> the Latin-tagged scope may contain bits of Latin grammar in it:
>  "_Andropogon aromaticus_ Sieber ex Schult." meaning that Sieber published
> this name based on an earlier description by Schultes, "_Rubus ursinus_
> Cham. et Schldl." meaning that the name was jointly published by von
> Chamisso and von Schlechtendal, and "_Sphyradium_ sensu Hartmann" meaning
> that this name was used by Hartmann but has been replaced.  (Note that the
> author citation is never in italics, and even the taxon name is not
> necessarily all in italics: some names of subspecies contain "ssp." or
> "var." and this is not italicized.)

  Fair enough, although it seems that Andy is looking to tag only the
names, not the surrounding text in Latin.



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