Friday, 9 January 2015

Latin Binomials

These are not calculations using the binomial theory and Latin numerals — I have often wondered how the Romans managed to do any maths at all with their cumbersome system of numerals — but the double-barrelled names used for living things by biologists. They are supposed to be set out according to a strict formula, which I get wrong whenever (which is rarely) I try to use it. Thus the break in the Limerick series: the next one uses such a name and I know I have got it wrong. In fact I think I’ve even got the wrong species. However, pace Jane, here is the next Limerick:

If you see a Rat (Rattus Norvegicus)
try to catch it: don’t let it evade you, ’cos
they always have fleases
with nasty diseases,
many of which are contagicous.

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