Larry's Pretty Good Word of the Day (prettygoodword) wrote in 1word1day,
Larry's Pretty Good Word of the Day
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Thursday word: saltator

Another bird week, another bird:


saltator (sal-TAY-tor) - n., any of 15 incertae sedis species of neotropical New World birds (genus Saltator).

Bonus term:

incertae sedis - adj., a term applied to a taxon or group of taxa whose relationship with others is unknown or undecided.


In other words, the ornithologists are still arguing over whether saltators should be part of the cardinal family or the tanager family. Incertae sedis is Latin, literal meaning "of uncertain placement/seat". Looking at their shape, I can see the confusion:


Thanks, WikiMedia!

As for the name of the bird itself, it was named in 1816 by French ornithologist Louis Pierre Vieillot from Latin saltatoris, dancer, apparently referring to its flight pattern.

---L.
Tags: latin, noun, s
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