PREFACE
 

    The differences between this “Seattle Code” and its predecessor, the “Edinburgh
Code” (published in 1966), are on the whole rather small. Ever since 1950 we have
witnessed a gradual decrease in the number as well as in the importance of the
proposals submitted to the International Botanical Congresses. At present most
proposals are concerned with refinements and increased precision rather than with
sweeping changes. Even so, the number of proposals which the Seattle Congress
accepted or referred to the Editorial Committee was still in the order of one hundred,
quite apart from the numerous proposals for conservation and rejection of names
accepted by the nomenclature committees since the publication of the Code of 1966.
Even though the main tenets of the codification of botanical nomenclature have
remained unchanged, the present Code shows an appreciable number of amendments
or additions in detail.

    At Edinburgh the issue of stabilization of the names themselves was still of great
importance; at Seattle the main issues were the tautonymous designations of taxa
between genus and species and below species, the perennial question of superfluous
names, and a major reorganization of the rules for hybrids. Unsolved questions were,
as usual, referred to special committees with the task to report to the Leningrad
Congress of 1975. The status of names of taxa above the rank of family and the
application of Articles 69, 70 and 71 were the two main subjects honored with the
appointment of such committees.

    The procedure adopted in the preparation of this Seattle Code has been the same
as that followed for the Stockholm, Paris, Montreal and Edinburgh Codes. The Code
as presented now is based on the decisions reached by the Nomenclature Section of
the Eleventh International Botanical Congress held in Seattle between 21 August and
2 September 1969. The Nomenclature Section met on 21-24 August; its decisions
were officially adopted by a plenary session of the Congress on 2 September 1969
(see XI International Botanical Congress, Proceedings, Washington D.C. 1970, p. 146.)
The proposals themselves had previously been published in Taxon and were then
presented to the Congress in the form of a Synopsis of proposals (Regnum vegetabile
vol. 60, 1969). A preliminary survey of the decisions of the Nomenclature Section
will be found in Taxon 19: 36-51 (1970), the full report of the proceedings in
Regnum vegetabile vol. 82 (Februari 1972). All those concerned with the organisation
of the meetings and the publication of the results are greatly indebted to the United
States National Committee for the Congress, as well as to the University of Washing-
ton, for effective and important material support.

    The Nomenclature Section decided to continue the publication of the official version

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    International Code of Botanical Nomenclature, 1972  —  Seattle Code

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text: © 1972, IAPT  —  web-edition: © 2014, Paul van Rijckevorsel

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of the Code in the English, French and German languages. These three texts are all
official, but, should there be any inconsistency between the versions, it is agreed to
regard the English wording arbitrarily as correct. The English text has been drawn
up and agreed upon by all members of the Editorial Committee, the English-speaking
members having the ultimate decision in matters of grammar or idiom.

    The Editorial Committee met at Montreux, Switzerland, in October 1970. The
International Union of Biological Sciences and the United States National Committee
for the Congress had made grants towards covering the expenses of that meeting.
This financial support was very welcome: a full meeting remains as necessary as ever
in order to reach agreement on the many questions (of substance as well as of detail)
delegated to the Editorial Committee by the Nomenclature Section. The Committee
is deeply grateful for the confidence shown by the Section in leaving numerous
questions to its discretion for final decision.

    The French text has been prepared by a subcommittee under the chairmanship
of Roger de Vilmorin, with Edmond Bonner and the Rapporteur-général as members.
The subcommittee had the great privilege of being invited to meet in the Chairman’s
summer cottage at Favone, Corsica, in May 1971.

    The German text was prepared by Georg Schulze, with the dedicated and able
help of Dr. F. Butzin of Berlin-Dahlem.

    A major change in the actual division of work among the members of the Com-
mittee came about because of the appointment of Edward G. Voss as vice-rapporteur
(to the Congress) and secretary (to the Committee). Having done so much of the
editorial work on the Code myself since 1950, I am extremely happy and privileged
to have found in Ed Voss a kindred soul with great dedication to our common cause.
The efficient and precise way in which he prepared all documents was of very great
help to all members of the Committee; the facility with which he, as a newcomer
to the Committee, adapted himself to his many-sided duties was impressive. I thank
him most sincerely for his excellent work.

    Thanks are due to many other persons as well. The publication of the Code is a
team effort. Foremost in this team are the members of the Editorial Committee.
The composition of this Committee is rather different now from that after Edinburgh,
but the new members at once showed the same enthusiasm as those who had served
on previous occasions. No member of the Stockholm group of 1950 is left, but we all
remember with warmth the person as well as the work of my predecessor as rap-
porteur-général, J. Lanjouw. We continued his work with the spirit of co-operation
and friendliness which were so characteristic of the meetings under his guidance.
I thank all my colleagues on the present committee for the considerable amount of
time arid energy spent and for their perseverance in trying to achieve precision and
clarity.

    It is obviously not possible to mention by name all those who have made a con-

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    International Code of Botanical Nomenclature, 1972  —  Seattle Code

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text: © 1972, IAPT  —  web-edition: © 2014, Paul van Rijckevorsel

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tribution to this Code. The botanists serving on the nomenclature committees – nearly
a hundred – have often had to work hard and long to deal with the proposals for
conservation. This work behind the scenes is very important and should be acknowl-
edged with great gratitude. Relatively small and modest-looking amendments in the
list of nomina conservanda are often the result of considerable dedication and
laborious research. In this respect we are especially grateful to J. Dandy for valuable
editorial, nomenclatural and bibliographic help. Many of the systematists performing
this unobtrusive but important nomenclatural work find it difficult to combine this
labour of love with their day-to-day duties. Without their efforts, however, we would
never be able to deal with the continuous stream of questions and proposals which is
a by-product of ongoing taxonomic work. Nomenclature serves taxonomy, and we
are fortunate to have a large group of dedicated taxonomists willing to assist their
colleagues through this time-consuming work.

    One of the many should be mentioned with special gratitude: my closest col-
laborator at Utrecht since 1950, Wil Keuken. Through her presence at the Congresses,
her work for the Code and for all other activities of lAPT, but certainly most of all
because of her personality, she has made many friends among the world’s plant
systematists. I am certain that I can add their warmest thanks to mine for the
essential part she continues to play in the smooth functioning of all our activities.

    In closing, a few words on the precise status of this International Code of Botanical
Nomenclature
. For a full description of the international organization of botanical
nomenclature I can refer to the account in McVaugh, Ross and Stafleu, An annotated
glossary of botanical nomenclature
(Regnum vegetabile vol. 56, pp. 28-30, 1968).
The final authority under which this Code is published is the International Botanical
Congress
. The Nomenclature Section of these Congresses discusses proposals for
amendment of the Code and appoints the members of the various nomenclature
committees. The decisions taken by the Section are submitted for ratification to the
plenary session of the Congress. In between these Congresses work is carried out by
the various committees (listed in Division III of the Code) under the auspices of the
International Association for Plant Taxonomy (IAPT) which is itself a section of the
International Union of Biological Sciences (IUBS). All nomenclature committees
together constitute the International Commission on Botanical Nomenclature of IUBS.
They receive important moral and financial support from this Union and through it
from the International Council of Scientific Unions (ICSU) and Unesco; subsidies
facilitate the work of the committees and the publication of the results. IUBS made
a special grant towards the publication of this edition of the Code. Our appreciation
of this longstanding, liberal, and generous help is as sincere as ever. It would not
have been possible to achieve the present degree of stability and efficiency in
botanical nomenclature without such support.

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    International Code of Botanical Nomenclature, 1972  —  Seattle Code

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text: © 1972, IAPT  —  web-edition: © 2014, Paul van Rijckevorsel

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    International Code of Botanical Nomenclature, 1972  —  Seattle Code

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text: © 1972, IAPT  —  web-edition: © 2014, Paul van Rijckevorsel

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