GEOL 104 Dinosaurs: A Natural History

Fall Semester 2006
Systematics I: Taxonomy

Taxon (pl. taxa): a named group of organisms.

Carl Linne' (Linnaeus) developed a universal set of rules in the Systema Natura ("Natural System") in 1758; later workers added and modified the system (primarily with the addition of new "ranks").

Some of the Linnean rules:

Linnean taxonomy has its own special set of grammatical rules:

Splitters: Taxonomists who consider a particular set of specimens to represent many taxa; Lumpers: those who consider a particular set to represent few taxa.

Rule of Priority: whichever validly formed name for a species or genus was published first, even if only by days, is the name that must be used.

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Last modified: 14 July 2006