Ploidy and Fertility
Wed, 12 Dec 2007 15:31:52 PST
On 12 Dec 07, at 15:10, Jim McKenney wrote:

> Just to cheer me up, I wish someone would re-tell the story (naming names
> and so on) of the skullduggery which occurred surrounding the
> Hippeastrum/Amaryllis controversy. Wasn't a well-known botanist accused of
> tampering with the Linnaeean type, maybe even moving it to another sheet or
> something like that? 

There was long-standing uncertainty just what plant Linnaeus had 
named "Amaryllis belladonna". Or more precisely, whether the plant we 
call "Amaryllis belladonna" is the same plant Linnaeus called by that 
name. Within living memory, the Linnean Society finally allowed the 
type speciment in the Linnaean herbarium to be dissected in order to 
settle the question.

It turned out that Amaryllis bellandonna L was indeed Amaryllis 
belladonna of common parlance. This resolved fundamental 
nomenclatural problems with Hippeastrum, Amaryllis, and I don't know 
what else.

I've never heard of there being any skullduggery in connection with 
this mess.
> Or should I just get back to work in the garden? 

You should do that too.

Rodger Whitlock
Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Maritime Zone 8, a cool Mediterranean climate

on beautiful Vancouver Island

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