Standard Article

History of Taxonomy

  1. Peter F Stevens

Published Online: 29 JAN 2003

DOI: 10.1038/npg.els.0003093



How to Cite

Stevens, P. F. 2003. History of Taxonomy. eLS. .

Author Information

  1. Missouri Botanical Gardens, St Louis, Missouri, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 29 JAN 2003


Taxonomy is the theory and practice of making classifications and detecting relationships. The formal classification of organisms in Western science begins around 1753, but societies worldwide have always assigned organisms to named groups.


  • classification;
  • systematics;
  • evolution;
  • phylogeny;
  • natural history;
  • botany