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In biodiversity informatics, a chresonym is the cited use of a taxon name, usually a species name, within a publication. Chresonym_sentence_0

The term is derived from the Greek χρῆσις chresis meaning "a use" and refers to published usage of a name. Chresonym_sentence_1

The technical meaning of the related term synonym is for different names that refer to the same object or concept. Chresonym_sentence_2

As noted by Hobart and Rozella B. Smith, zoological systematists had been using "the term (synonymy) in another sense as well, namely in reference to all occurrences of any name or set of names (usually synonyms) in the literature." Chresonym_sentence_3

Such a "synonymy" could include multiple listings, one for each place the author found a name used, rather than a summarized list of different synonyms. Chresonym_sentence_4

The term "chresonym" was created to distinguish this second sense of the term "synonym." Chresonym_sentence_5

The concept of synonymy is furthermore different in the zoological and botanical codes of nomenclature. Chresonym_sentence_6

A name that correctly refers to a taxon is further termed an orthochresonym while one that is applied incorrectly for a given taxon may be termed a heterochresonym. Chresonym_sentence_7

Example (orthochresonymy) Chresonym_section_0

Species names consist of a genus part and a species part to create a binomial name. Chresonym_sentence_8

Species names often also include a reference to the original publication of the name by including the author and sometimes the year of publication of the name. Chresonym_sentence_9

As an example, the sperm whale, Physeter catodon, was first described by Carl Linnaeus in his landmark 1758 10th edition of Systema Naturae. Chresonym_sentence_10

Thus, the name may also be referenced as Physeter catodon Linnaeus 1758. Chresonym_sentence_11

That name was also used by Harmer in 1928 to refer to the species in the Proceedings of the Linnaean Society of London and of course, it has appeared in numerous other publications since then. Chresonym_sentence_12

Taxonomic catalogues, such as Catalog of Living Whales by Philip Hershkovitz, may reference this usage with a Genus+species+authorship convention that may appear to indicate a new species (a homonym) when in fact it is referencing a particular usage of a species name (a chresonym). Chresonym_sentence_13

Hershkovitz, for example refers to Physeter catodon Harmer 1928, which can cause confusion as this name+author combination really refers to the same name that Linnaeus first published in 1758. Chresonym_sentence_14

Example (heterochresonymy) Chresonym_section_1

Nepenthes rafflesiana, a species of pitcher plant, was described by William Jack in 1835. Chresonym_sentence_15

The name Nepenthes rafflesiana as used by Hugh Low in 1848 is a heterochresonym. Chresonym_sentence_16

Cheek and Jebb (2001) explain the situation thus: Chresonym_sentence_17

The description that Maxwell Tylden Masters provided in 1881 for the taxon that had previously been known to gardeners as Nepenthes hookeriana (an interchangeable form of the name for the hybrid Nepenthes × hookeriana) differs from Low's description. Chresonym_sentence_18

The International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants does not require that descriptions from so long ago include specification of a type specimen, and types can be chosen later to fit these old names. Chresonym_sentence_19

Since the descriptions differ, Low's and Masters' name have different types. Chresonym_sentence_20

Masters therefore created a later homonym, which, according to the rules of the code is illegitimate. Chresonym_sentence_21

See also Chresonym_section_2


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