A system of naming species using a generic name and a specific epithet, established by the Swedish botanist Carl von Linne (also known by the Latinized form of his name, Carolus Linnaeus) in 1753. Previous to this the scientific names of species consisted of a short Latin description. This was too cumbersome as a name yet too short for a proper description. By separating the procedures of naming and describing, Linnaeus established the foundations of present-day nomenclature. The generic name is a noun often based on a classical name as, for example, Endymion and Narcissus. The name can also be honorific, commemorating the plant's discoverer, such as Saintpaulia (African violets), named after Baron Walter von Saint Paul-Illaire. Alternatively, the generic noun may refer to the locality in which the plant was first found, Ligusticum (lovage) from Liguria (northwest Italy), for example. Specific names are adjectival and often describe a particular feature of a plant, such as leaf shape or flower colour (e.g. longifolius, albus). Like generic names they may also be commemorative or geographical (e.g. wilsonii, lusitanica). See table 1 in the appendix for the meanings of some common specific epithets. Binomials are always Latinized and are usually printed in italic script, the generic name beginning with a capital letter while the specific epithet is lower case throughout (e.g. Primula vulgaris). When naming a species the rules of the International Code of Botanical Nomenclature
must be followed.