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Nereidae vs. Nereididae

aim at nhm.ac.uk aim at nhm.ac.uk
Wed Jul 10 04:10:06 EST 1996

On Tue, 9 Jul 1996 13:21:33 +0200,
  Torkild Bakken writes:

>It has been brought to my knowledge that a few months ago (February/March 
>?) someone asked for information concerning the family names Nereidae 
>versus Nereididae on Annelida net.

That first message came from mcamargo at aica.cem.ufpr.br on Sunday the 17th. 
of December last year.

>I am very interested in the "problem" so if those who sent that previous 
>request could get in contact with me, or anyone else could give me some 
>information, I would be very grateful.

I sent the following reply to M.G. de Camargo, but not to the whole 
discussion group:

     "When the Americans first started putting Nereis in the Nereididae 
rather than the Nereidae, I decided to check it out. I found that, in Greek 
mythology, Nereis was one of the Nereides - the 50 sea-nymph daughters of 
Nereus (a god of the sea) and his wife Doris.

     The generic name Nereis is therefore obviously feminine, but not being 
a Greek scholar I could not work out the termination of the grammatical 
stem for use in forming derivatives (see page 223 of the 1985 edition of 
the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature). I therefore spoke to 
Mr. Melville (then Secretary to the ICZN), who assured me that under the 
circumstances NEREIDIDAE is the correct spelling for the family name.

     I hope this helps!"
Mr. A.I. Muir,
Marine Biological Services Division, Department of Zoology,
Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, South Kensington, 

Tel: +44 (0) 171 938 9298
Fax: +44 (0) 171 938 9158

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