The Grammatical Dictionary of Botanical Latin is intended to help taxonomists
prepare Latin diagnoses and descriptions of new taxa, and to read certain
published Latin scientific literature, primarily in botany. It is a compendium
from many sources of botanically useful words, enhanced with examples of usage,
and interspersed with annotations, explanations, observations, and grammatical
guides. The Dictionary is also freely available to the botanical community
online as a searchable database. It is presently only partially finished.
The Dictionary also supports the present requirement of the International Code of
Botanical Nomenclature to provide a Latin diagnosis or description for new taxa for
most plant groups. This legislated requirement is considered a less onerous task for
the specialist than would be perusing the literature in all the major scientific
languages for information on newly described taxa. In addition, even partial facility
in the Latin language opens a portal to a vast cultural and scientific literature.
The Dictionary was originally compiled as a personal resource by P.M. Eckel, Missouri
Botanical Garden, and is here shared with other taxonomists. The sections of the
Dictionary are being added to the online database in reverse alphabetic order (Z to A)
for good and sufficient reasons, including ease in cross-referencing. Users of the
Dictionary are encouraged to contact Web editor Richard Zander with any
comments or to report any errors or misapprehensions in the work. This Missouri
Botanical Garden Web site was designed and is maintained by Myriam Fica, Web Technology
Specialist, Information Technology, MBG, and her work is gratefully acknowledged.
The Dictionary is here presented as a very large work-in-progress mounted online in
fascicles to give taxonomists access as soon as possible.
A suggested citation for this online resource is:
Eckel, P.M. 2011. A Grammatical Dictionary of Botanical Latin. Missouri Botanical Garden.
Users are encouraged to use the % wildcard in searches because Latin is an inflected
language, and word endings may be various. The wildcard may be at one or the other ends
or at both ends of a string of letters, or in the middle of a word: e.g. %um, um% %um%,
Copyright ¬© P. M. Eckel 2010-2023