The Botanical Review

, Volume 69, Issue 1, pp 44–58 | Cite as

Apomorphy-based definition also pinpoints a node, and PhyloCode names prevent effective communication

  • Jun-Ichi Kojima


Acceptable methods of defining taxon (or clade) names in the draft PhyloCode, or so-called phylogenetic nomenclature, are “node based,” “stem based,” and “apomorphy based.” All of them define a clade name by pinpointing a node; whereas node-based and stem-based definitions require two or more taxon “specifiers” to define names, an apomorphy-based definition requires two specifiers of different types; namely, a single-taxon specifier and a character specifier. The taxon specifier in an apomorphy-based definition is completely different from the “type” in the Linnaean system. Taxon (or clade) names in the PhyloCode are characterized in two entirely different manners: One is a name that does not change, either in its orthography or in the contents of the taxon referred to by it (or its meaning) over time; the other is a name that is just like a pure mark and thus has no meaning. Communication through such PhyloCode names is very ineffective or impossible.


Botanical Review Recent Common Ancestor Phylogenetic Hypothesis Alpha3 Taxon Specifier 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© The New York Botanical Garden 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jun-Ichi Kojima
    • 1
  1. 1.Natural History Laboratory, Faculty of ScienceIbaraki UniversityMitoJapan

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