Submitted to: Taxon
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: April 15, 2004
Publication Date: August 1, 2004
Citation: Zijlstra, G., Reveal, J.L., Wiersema, J.H. 2004. Some proposals to clarify the concept of 'ascription of a name'. Taxon. 53 (3) p.856
Interpretive Summary: Accurate scientific names of plants are essential for communication about them including international exchange and trade of plant germplasm. The International Code of Botanical Nomenclature governs the accurate scientific names of plants including the author of the name. Like any set of rules, their interpretation is not always clear or agreed upon by all users. Such is the case for determining the author of a species especially in the older plant literature. This paper proposes to clarify the rules about authors of scientific names of plants by presenting several new examples to be included in the Code. As a result of these additions to the Code, botanists will be able to provide accurate scientific names of plants with their authors. The modified Code will be used by botanists to ensure consistency and stability in providing the scientific names and authors of plants.
Differing interpretations still exist in the application of Article 46 of the ICBN in instances where an ascription of the description or diagnosis of a new taxon to an author differs from the author of the publication, but without explicit ascription of the name itself. The debate has focused on the question of whether there is indeed no ascription of the name, or if ascription of the name is by implication. Art. 46, Ex. 5 plays a key role in the latter interpretation. The Tokyo decisions were a compromise between rather different concepts for the use of 'ex' and 'in'. For the sake of stability, we suggest that Art. 46.3 should prevail. It has received general recognition, and its strict application offers the only solution to continuing the generally accepted typification of many names. We propose an amendment to Ex. 5 and that some new examples be added to Art. 46.