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"TYPE" DICTIONARY

        Here is a partially abridged portion of the glossary from the 1985 edition of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (ICZN)* which may help in understanding some of the taxonomy terms in dealing with the "type" designations:

type: A term used alone, or forming part of a compound term, to denote a particular kind of specimen or taxon.

  • allotype: A term, not regulated by the Code, for a designated specimen of opposite sex to the holotype.

  • cotype: A term not recognized by the Code, formerly used for either syntype or paratype, but that should not now be used in zoological nomenclature.

  • genotype: A term not recognized by the Code, formerly used for type species, but that should not now be used in zoological nomenclature.

  • hapantotype: One or more preparations of directly related individuals representing differing stages in the life cycle together forming a name-bearing type in an extant species of protozoa. A hapantotype is a series that must not be restricted by lectotype selection; however, if a hapantotype is found to contain individuals of more than one species, components may be eliminated until it contains individuals of only one species.

  • holotype: A single specimen designated as the name-bearing type of a species or subspecies when it was established, or the single specimen on which such a taxon was based when no type was specified.

  • lectotype: A syntype designated as the single name-bearing type specimen subsequent to the establishment of a nominal species or subspecies.

  • name-bearing type: The type genus, type species, holotype, lectotype, series of syntypes (which, together, form the name-bearing type), neotype, type slide, or hapantotype, that provides the objective standard of reference whereby the application of the name of a taxon can be determined.

  • neotype: The single specimen designated as the name-bearing type of a nominal species or subspecies for which no holotype, or lectotype, or syntype(s), or prior neotype, is believed to exist.

  • paralectotype: Each specimen of a former syntype series remaining after the designation of a lectotype.

  • paratype: Each specimen of a type series other than the holotype.

  • syntype: Each specimen of a type series from which neither a holotype nor a lectotype has been designated.

  • topotype: A term, not regulated by the Code, for a specimen originating from the type locality of the species or subspecies to which it is thought to belong, whether or not the specimen is part of the type series.

  • type genus: The nominal genus that is the name-bearing type of a nominal family-group taxon.

    type horizon: The geological stratum from which the name-bearing type of a nominal species or subspecies was collected.

    type host: The host species with which the name-bearing type of a nominal species or subspecies was associated.

    type locality: The geographical place of capture or collection of the name-bearing type of a nominal species or subspecies. If the name-bearing type was captured or collected after being transported by boat, vehicle, aircraft, or other human or mechanical means, the type locality is the place from which it, or its wild progenitor, began its unnatural journey.

    type series: The series of specimens that either constitutes the name-bearing type (syntypes) of a nominal species or subspecies or from which the name-bearing type has been or may be designated.

    type species: The nominal species that is the name-bearing type of a nominal genus or subgenus.

    type specimen: A term used in previous editions of the Code for holotype, lectotype, or neotype; also used generally for any specimen of the type series.

            *The International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature (ICZN) is the official body responsible for providing and regulating the system for ensuring that every animal has a unique and universally accepted scientific name.

            I trust this will be of at least some help in sorting out some the "type" designations used by biologists.



    Munch, Edvard 1863 -- 1944  Painter, born in Löten, Norway. He studied in Oslo, travelled in Europe, and finally settled in Norway in 1908. In Paris he came under the influence of Gauguin. He was obsessed by subjects such as death and love, which he illustrated in an Expressionist Symbolic style, using bright colours and a tortuously curved design, as in The Scream (1893). His engravings influenced die Brücke in Germany.
    The Scream (1893) by Edvard Munch
    [Mouseover image for information on Edvard Munch]


    Page Date: 01 May '00
    Page Modification Date: 11 Apr '11
    Copyright © 2011 Robert F. Bolland