What's in a Name? That Which We Call a Rose Chafer, by Any Other Word Would Smell as Sweet

Tuesday, June 25th, 2024
May Berenbaum

Center for Advanced Study
Levis Faculty Center, Room 210
919 W. Illinois, Urbana

Event Description

Long before the mid-18th century, when Carl von Linné developed his binomial (two-part) system of scientific nomenclature for all known animals and plants, a binomial system of vernacular, or common names, was already in widespread use and remains in use today. For many reasons, among which are their tremendous diversity, their often obscure or unknown biology, and their high levels of endemism, naming insects presents a unique challenge to scientific and lay communities alike. These challenges are the focus today of intense discussions about what should or shouldn't be in a name (with apologies to Shakespeare).

May Berenbaum

CAS Director and Professor of Entomology