academic discipline; science of finding, describing, defining and naming groups of biological organisms
Taxonomy (from Ancient Greek: τάξις taxis, "arrangement," and -νομία -nomia, "method") is the science of defining groups of biological organisms on the basis of shared characteristics and giving names to those groups.
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- The synthesis of paleontology, taxonomy, and comparative anatomy that Cuvier achieved was based on a teleological approach to nature, one that gave primacy to functional purpose over structural affinity.
- Toby A. Appel, The Cuvier-Geoffrey Debate: French Biology in the Decades before Darwin (1987)
- Taxonomy makes sense out of the bewildering variety of life on Earth and is meant to provide valuable insight into evolution. As more is learned about living things, including the evolutionary relationships between species, taxonomy changes.
- Sylvia S. Mader, Biology (10th ed., 2010), Ch. 1. A View of Life