Introduction to this site

     This site brings together the past editions of the botanical Code, presented
as web-files, hyperlinked horizontally and vertically. By now, there is over a
century worth of editions of the botanical Code. Since mid-2011 it is named
the International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi, and plants, but it is
best known as the International Code of Botanical Nomenclature (ICBN), a
name it has borne from the 1952, Stockholm Code to the 2011, Melbourne
Congress. Earlier, it had been named the International Rules of Botanical
or Règles internationales de la nomenclature botanique. Earlier
than that, there were the Lois de la Nomenclature botanique of Alphonse de

     The reason for the present work is to provide insight into the history of the
botanical Code, with easy access to the various forms that each individual item
(provision, example, etc) has gone through. To effect this, the English text of all
the editions of the botanical Code has been reproduced in HTML, thus enabling
easy linking both internally and from one edition to another. The focus is on
those parts of the Code that includes provisions, and excludes lists of names,
etc. Only for the Lois, the text is in French, as this is the only version.

     All editions are hyperlinked, horizontally and vertically. These hyperlinks
can be found by “hovering”, but are not otherwise marked. For vertical
hyperlinks the basic principle is that the first letter of the actual provision will
take the user forward, while what precedes the actual provision will take the
user backwards. Vertical hyperlinks connect to the immediately preceding or
succeeding edition, except in a few exceptional cases (such as for example
Rec. 30 of the 1912, Brussels Rules which was deleted from the 1935,
Cambridge Rules but then was reinstituted as a Note at the 1935, Amsterdam
Congress or, for a more extreme example, the recommendation that new names
in botany should not duplicate existing zoological names, which was dropped in
1905, to return no sooner than in the 2000, St Louis Code).

     The intent has been to approach the originals as closely as possible, in
typography and layout. However, not everything that was possible in lead
typesetting can be easily rendered into HTML (and not even everything that is
possible in electronic typesetting can be rendered into HTML). Fortunately,
out-and-out breakdowns are very few. This aim to approach the originals as
closely as possible also means trying to retain typographical errors, which is
hard to do. Fortunately these are very few.

     This aim to approach the originals as closely as possible means trying to
follow the style of the originals as closely as possible. It is very noticeable
that in the early Codes there is no particular uniformity of style; each edition
of the Code somewhat has its own style, and even more, it is not necessarily so
that a particular style is followed consistently throughout any particular edition,
or even on a single page. When it comes to style, the editions of the Code can
be roughly divided into three main groups: 1906-1935 (the Rules), 1952-1972
(the ‘blue Codes’), and 1978 onwards; the editions in this last category show a
strong evolution in style.

     There are two ‘editions’ that are not reproduced (quite) in the original. These
are the 1883, Lois, which are even more unofficial than the 1867 Lois, but which
have been included here, as the 1906 Rules are based on these rather than on the
1867 version. In the 1883 Lois, as published, changes were marked by being
printed in italics, while the normal italics in the rest of the text were suppressed.
Here, changes are marked in red, and the normal italics in the rest of the text are
restored. Where necessary, round brackets around text not part of the Lois
(referring to supporting text) have been replaced by square brackets. The
Amsterdam Rules (based on the decisions of the 1935 Congress) were never
published as such; here the Amsterdam Supplement, of 1950, and accepted at
Stockholm as the basis of deliberations there, has been used (in combination
with the 1935, Cambridge Rules) to amalgamate a composite, which is midway
in style between the 1935, Cambridge Rules and the 1952, Stockholm Code,
following the style of the Supplement as best as possible. This means that the
unofficial 1947, Brittonia composite (also based on the decisions of the 1935
Congress, and reprinted as a separate book in 1948 for the benefit of the
members of the ASPT) is ignored here.

     To help the reader find changes from the previous edition, the text has been
marked in color (the exception being the 1906, Vienna Rules, being represented
here by its English version, which obviously cannot show changes from the
1883, Lois in any kind of detail; only those provisions which are entirely new
are signalled by having their numbering marked in red). This marking in color
has been done as conservatively as possible, and the following may serve as a
general guide.

     Notable changes (“new!”), whether these are big or small, are marked in red.
In a few cases where there is a extended piece (say, a quarter of a page or more)
to be marked in red this has been muted to maroon. A special problem is
presented by deletions, as what has been removed cannot itself be marked; if
there is no other way to indicate a change has occurred, a part of the remaining
text (usually before the deletion, but sometimes after) is marked in red.

     Less drastic changes, where a degree of continuity is present, are indicated
in blue (“moved“, “copied”, etc).

     Changes that are even less notable are marked in purple. These include such
changes as (re)numbering, changes in style (from double quotes to single quotes,
from bold to italic, etc) and changes in status (from a Rule to a Note, from a
footnote to a Rule, etc). Changes in status are signalled by marking the entire up-
or down-graded text purple. In the earlier Codes there is not necessarily a sharp
distinction between Notes and Rules, that is, some Notes are Notes, while some
are actually Rules. Here (for the purpose of marking status changes), all Notes
are taken at face value: anything that claims to be a Note is treated as a Note.

     Where a block of text has been moved in some way this has not been marked
as such, but is only signaled by marking the first dozen or so characters of the
moved block of text. If the text has been moved from a quite different place this
has been signalled in blue. If the text is merely moved a little (that is, becoming
a new paragraph start, joining up with the preceding paragraph, a move within an
Article, and such), this has been signalled in purple. Such a moved block of text
may consist of two or more items, say a Rule, supported by an Example, in
which case only the first item is signalled by marking the first dozen or so of
the moved text. However, if it is numbered, the numbering of all the involved
items has been marked (see for example a block that was moved from the 1988,
Berlin Code, Art. 40.2, supported by four Examples, becoming Art. 11.8,
supported by the same four Examples, in the 1994, Tokyo Code, in which all
components have a blue number, but where only the beginning of the block is
more extensively marked); this includes the unnumbered “Note” and “Example”
of earlier editions.

     As a later development, links are being added to the proposals (and decisions)
that gave rise to changes. For this purpose three extra files per Code are provided:
one with the full titles of the proposals, and associated papers, one conversion
table and one overview of Congress action. This was most easily done for the
more recent Codes, as the process of managing proposals has become ever more
streamlined over time. At this stage, these links to proposals are provided for the
Codes back to the 1956, Paris Code.

     HTML mark-up has been kept as basic as possible, hopefully making for
optimal browser compatibility (even something as innocuous-looking as “</i>”
is interpreted differently by different browsers). There appears to be quite a
bit of HTML-technique that looks good in the sale pitch, but that upon testing
proves not to work. Mark-up was done with the purpose of making proofreading
as easily as possible, that is, in a non- proportional font (New Courier) with text
aligned (for the obvious reasons) at either four or twenty-nine spaces from the
left. For the technically-minded: sizes are in pts (tutorials often recommend using
px, but it proves that of the examined browsers none actually supports text
mark-up in px, while some experimentation shows that ems don’t offer any
advantage); where applicable, spacing is given in centimeters.

     The project was realized in a period of over nine years, as it is not something
that can be done in a hurry. Given the complexity of the project there can be no
guarantee that it is error free, in any respect.

Paul van Rijckevorsel
Utrecht, 2014

2014 ©, Paul van Rijckevorsel