One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A scientific name in which the same word is used for both genus and species, for example Vulpes vulpes (the red fox).
- ‘The taxonomic Latin for ‘quahog’ is Mercenaria mercenaria - a tautonym that pays tribute to the use of quahog shells as wampum.’
- ‘Bird names in which the genus and species are identical except for capitalisation are apparently called tautonyms.’
- ‘In an attempt to gain acceptance for the use of duplicate binomials, MacMillan proposed the tautonym A. apios.’
- ‘There are 82 species of birds whose scientific names are tautonyms - that is, birds for which the two parts of the scientific name are the same.’
- ‘This would have had the effect of making the name Z. zizyphus a tautonym.’
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