What is the Code?

The International Code of Zoological Nomenclature is a set of rules and recommendations on the naming of animals. It regulates nomenclature only - i.e. the way animal names are created and published (made available) - not taxonomy (classification). The aim of the Code is to provide the maximum universality and continuity in the scientific names of animals, i.e. to ensure that any given animal taxon is known under one universally recognised scientific name. The need for a code of zoological nomenclature was recognised in 1842, addressed by a committee that included luminaries such as Richard Owen and Charles Darwin and executed in a set of rules drafted by Hugh Strickland. This was adopted by major scientific bodies in Europe and the U.S. The Stricklandian Code was further developed, with increased universality across animal taxa and including the needs of work on fossil taxa, and resulted in the Rgles internationals de la Nomenclature zoologique in 1905. The first edition of the with its modern structure Code was published in 1961; it is currently in its fourth edition.

Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith