If you’ve been following Scientist Sees Squirrel for a while, you’ve probably noticed that I have a little bit of a thing for the etymologies of Latin (or “scientific”) names of organisms. It’s perhaps a bit of a niche interest… but it shouldn’t be; there are fascinating stories behind the names we’ve coined. So much so, in fact, that I’m writing a book on the topic – in particular, about eponymous Latin names (those named after people).
I’ll have more to say about my new book soon; but today, I just wanted to alert you to a recent episode of Liam Taylor’s Natural Reality podcast. On my episode, Liam and I talked about Latin names – about why they’re interesting (to me, and I hope I can convince you, to you too); about how on earth I got interested in the stories behind Latin names; and about some of my favourite names.
Liam’s best question, I think, was this: what makes (for me) a “good” Latin name? My answer was that a good Latin name is one that tells a story. The podcast episode is full of those stories. If you’d like to hear a few of them, you can listen to it, or download it, here.
© Stephen Heard January 10, 2019