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International Code of Botanical Nomenclature

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The International Code of Botanical Nomenclature is the set of rules according to which plants are given their formal botanical names (scientific names). These names are sometimes called 'Latin' names. It specifies the standards and forms of names given to each taxon of plants recognised in botany. On 1 May 1753 the publication of Species Plantarum by Linnaeus marked the formal start date of plant taxonomy according to the code. The code is maintained by the International Association for Plant Taxonomy. There have been several versions of the code, the most recent is the 'St Louis code' which was adopted in 1999; this supersedes the earlier versions. Following the International Botanical Congress in Vienna in 2005, the 'Vienna code' will supersede the current 'St. Louis code'.

The nomenclature code should not be confused with the scientific classification of living things.

Botanical nomenclature is independent of zoological and bacteriological nomenclature. It follows the same general principles as the other two codes however, including the use of a binomial name for each species. For a general account of the use of scientific names across botany, zoology and bacteriology, see binomial nomenclature.

The code calls for the material from which a taxon is described, and on which a taxon is based, to be deposited and preserved in a herbarium.

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