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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A system of plant taxonomy, the Thorne system of plant classification was devised by the American botanist Robert F. Thorne (1920–2015) in 1968,[1] and he continued to issue revisions over many years (1968–2007).[1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8]

Some versions of the system are available online. The Bioinformatics Working Group Center for the Study of Digital Libraries at Texas A&M University lists the March 1999 version[9] (and other classification systems).[10] James Reveal's course lecture notes (1999) also gives an account of the Thorne system at that time, with an extensive listing of synonyms, both nomenclatural and taxonomic, for each name in the system[11] together with several other classification systems.[12]

For a discussion of the various suffixes used for superorders (-florae vs. -anae), see Brummitt 1992,[13] and Thorne 1992.[5] In this latter paper, Thorne sets out his reasons for abandoning -florae for -anae, following contemporary practice.

1968 system



1992 system

The 1992 system lists 69 orders and 440 families




2007 system

The 2007 system lists 12 subclasses, 35 superorders, 87 orders, 40 suborders, and 472 families. It uses the suffixes given in the following example.

Class Magnoliopsida ("Angiospermae") - 12 subclasses



  • Reveal, James (22 November 1998). "Lists of the Flowering Plant Taxa Accepted by Cronquist, Dahlgren, Reveal, Takhtajan & Thorne". Vascular Plant Family Nomenclature. University of Maryland: Norton-Brown Herbarium. Retrieved 3 January 2016.
  • Reveal, James L (29 March 1999a). "An updated classification of the Monocotyledoneae by Robert F Thorne". Plant Biology. University of Maryland: Norton-Brown Herbarium. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  • Reveal, James L (1999b). "Thorne System of Angiosperm Classification". Plant University of Maryland: Norton-Brown Herbarium. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  • Reveal, James L (1999c). "PBIO250 Lecture Notes. Plant Taxonomy: Systems of Vascular Plant Classification". Plant University of Maryland: Norton-Brown Herbarium. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  • Brummitt, R.K. (1992). Vascular plant families and genera : a listing of the genera of vascular plants of the world according to their families, as recognised in the Kew Herbarium, with an analysis of relationships of the flowering plant families according to eight systems of classification. Kew: Royal Botanic Gardens. ISBN 9780947643430.

Works by Thorne

Note: This is a selected list of the more influential systems. There are many other systems, for instance a review of earlier systems, published by Lindley in his 1853 edition, and Dahlgren (1982). Examples include the works of Scopoli, Batsch and Grisebach.

This page was last edited on 5 February 2019, at 00:00
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