Message 2003-12-0002: One more Recommendation?

Sun, 30 Nov 2003 21:22:24 +0100

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Date: Sun, 30 Nov 2003 21:22:24 +0100
From: David Marjanovic <>
To: PML <>
Subject: One more Recommendation?

Currently Eotetrapoda includes Tetrapoda, Eosauropterygia includes
Sauropterygia, Paraves includes Aves, Pseudosuchia includes Suchia,
Prototribosphenida includes Tribosphenida, and so on; in some minority
phylogenies Eumaniraptora includes Maniraptora. These cases are
etymologically absurd (all tetrapods are "dawn tetrapods", birds are
"besides birds", all crocodiles and their closest relatives are "false
crocodiles", all derived mammals are the "first" such, and perhaps not all
"true" maniraptorans are maniraptorans). Therefore I would like to propose
the following Recommendation:

Many names are formed by adding a prefix (such as eo- "dawn", para-
"besides", pseudo- "false", proto- "the first", eu- "good, true") to an
existing name. To prevent absurdities (such as Pseudosuchia including
Suchia, thus "crocodiles" being "false crocodiles") under all likely
phylogenies, names with such prefixes should be carefully defined (for
example, Pseudosuchia should be defined as excluding *Crocodylus

(Pseudosuchia is a relatively harmless example because it is rarely used.)


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