Definition of tautonym in English:


Pronunciation /ˈtôdəˌnim/ /ˈtɔdəˌnɪm/


Botany Zoology
  • A scientific name in which the same word is used for both genus and species, for example Vulpes vulpes (the red fox).

    ‘In an attempt to gain acceptance for the use of duplicate binomials, MacMillan proposed the tautonym A. apios.’
    • ‘Bird names in which the genus and species are identical except for capitalisation are apparently called tautonyms.’
    • ‘There are 82 species of birds whose scientific names are tautonyms - that is, birds for which the two parts of the scientific name are the same.’
    • ‘This would have had the effect of making the name Z. zizyphus a tautonym.’
    • ‘The taxonomic Latin for ‘quahog’ is Mercenaria mercenaria - a tautonym that pays tribute to the use of quahog shells as wampum.’