Spelling of Fryeria rueppelii

March 1, 2000
From: Erwin Koehler

Dear Bill,
Can you tell why Fryeria rueppelii Bergh, 1869 is spelled with one 'l'? I attach a file with the right spelling, because I think computers all over the world don't work with the German alphabet (my own name is a good example). If it is named in honour of Rueppell it should be spelled with 2 'l's - posthumous he should be glad that the name is not Ruepel - the German meaning of this is boor, rowdy.
Erwin Koehler


Erwin Koehler, 2000 (Mar 1) Spelling of Fryeria rueppelii. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/1998

The apparently incorrect spelling of the name is based on two articles of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature. Firstly names with marks such as 'ü' have to be transliterated into standard alphabet as you have illustrated above. This Rule existed long before computers but I must admit converting your Koehler to Koehler so that search engines will find your name.

The second point is that the spelling of published names can only be changed in exceptional circumstances. Basically for a mispelling to be corrected there must be evidence within the paper where the name is introduced to show that a mispelling has occurred. For example if an author writes "I name this species Doris morgaretae after my wife Margaret, there would be grounds to change the name to D. margaretae on the grounds of a mispelling or typographical error. However if the author had just said "I name this species after my wife" without mentioning her name, then there would be no grounds for amending the spelling at a later date.

In the case of Fryeria rüppelii there is no indication of a mispelling in the original description. Here is a paraphase of part of a submission to the International Commission to clarify and stabilise the name Fryeria rüppelii as the type species of Fryeria. [Brunckhorst, Rudman & Willan (1989) Case 2682 Bulletin of Zoological Nomenclature 46(3): 161-164], where this question was discussed:

"The name Fryeria rüppelii was proposed by Bergh (1869). The spelling of the specific name has been inconsistent and the following variations have been used: rüppelii, rüppellii, rüppeli, ruppelli, ruppelii, rueppelli. Bergh (1869) spelt the name rüppelii and this name must be corrected to rueppelii according to the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature. The species rüppelii is named after Rüppell, but Bergh consistently misspelt his name 'Rüppel' in his 1869 paper. It is therefor not permitted to amend the name to rueppelli as there is no indication in the paper of a spelling error".

Under the Rules if Bergh had said he was naming the species Fryeria rüppelii in honour of Eduard Rüppell then we could change the spelling. I know it sounds silly but it saves uncertainty and later arguments about spelling of names.

Best wishes,
Bill Rudman.

Rudman, W.B., 2000 (Mar 1). Comment on Spelling of Fryeria rueppelii by Erwin Koehler. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from http://www.seaslugforum.net/find/1998


Fryeria rueppelii

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