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Definition of International Code of Botanical Nomenclature

Categorized under "General"

Definition as written by Terry:

The Code (sometimes referred to as "Tokyo Code" or "ICBN") is an internationally-recognized authority, intended to encourage stability within botanical nomenclature. It provides a stable method of naming taxonomic groups, avoiding and rejecting the use of names which may cause error or ambiguity or throw science into confusion.

Definition as written by Monocromatico:

By the rules of the ICBN, every taxonomic cathegory recieves a name finished with certain suffixes, each one relating to each cathegory:

Phyllum (Division): -phyta
Class: -opsida
Order: -ales
Family: -aceae


It also determines that the name that preceds those sufixes must be the name of the oldest genera ever described within each group. Like, Magnolia was the first described Angiosperm, so the Angiosperm division, by these rules, is more correctly called Magnoliophyta. Lilium was the first monocot to be described, so the monocots are also known as Liliopsida. The order Rosales recieved this name because the genus Rosa was the first of this group to be described.

Older works may feature classical names that lack this rule, like the family Leguminosae (which, by the ICBN, shall be called Fabaceae), or the order Microspermae (further known as Orchidales). These names are generally accepted, but the Code stimulates the authors to uniformize the names.

There are other rules, but the document is too extensive. It is available on the internet.


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