Biographical & Type Information - W
Waga, Antoni F. (b. 1799; d. 1890) - Collection conserved in the Institute of Systematic Zoology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Krakow (ISZP). Citations: Larousse (1876), Anonymous (1890), and Mabille (1890).
Wagner, Eduard (b. June 20, 1896, Hamburg, Germany; d. Sept. 11, 1978) - Most of Wagner’s collection is deposited in the Universität Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany (ZMUH), but some of his types in the Eckerlein Collection are now in the Geneva Collection; also, Iranian specimens from Staatliches Mus. Naturkunde, Stuttgart, Germany (SMNS). Wagner, in many of his early papers, usually gave the total number of % & & specimens in the type series, and he usually indicated the collection localities, and museum deposition, but he did not usually connect the two. It is often impossible to tell from the original description exactly what the type locality is, or what sex the HT is. See Ribes & Goula (1986) and Aukema (1999) for information on the Wagner Miridae types conserved in ZMUH. Citations: Weber (1976) and Tamanini (1979).
Walker, Francis (b. July 31, 1809, Southgate, England; d. Oct. 5, 1874, Wanstead, England) - Controversial figure who published 87 papers on a variety of groups including Orthoptera, Neuroptera, Homoptera, Diptera, Lepidoptera, and Hymenoptera (he described over 20,000 new species of insects). Stories abound about his description of new taxa for payment (1 shilling for each new species, and 1 pound for each new genus), thus resulting in poor systematics. These stories are false however; Walker contracted a lump sum for each catalog he produced (Evenhuis, 2011). His contemporary, StDl, so infuriated by Walker’s alleged incompetence, proposed that his work be ignored (StDl 1862), and he himself largely ignored many of Walker’s papers; this sadly resulted in a number of StDl’s names falling as junior synonyms of Walker’s taxa. His descriptions were often short and vague, and the taxonomic placement so poor that many subsequent workers erred because they could not recognize Walker’s species. Distant (1899), who organized and corrected much of Walker’s work on the Pentatomomorpha, put it this way: "I have myself felt the great inconvenience -- to use no stronger term -- of sinking some of my own species when, to employ a parabolic expression, I found that my snipe had been previously described by Walker as pigeons." In fact, in an obituary, an anonymous author (1874) wrote "More than twenty years too late for his scientific reputation, and after having done an amount of injury to entomology almost inconceivable in its immensity, Francis Walker has passed from among us." Most of the material Walker studied is in the British Museum of Natural History (BMNH). Some of his material is now in the Museum of Victoria, Melbourne (See Walker, K.L., 1985, 5th no. of Tymbal, or Antenna, 1985, for list). In most of his original descriptions, Walker indicated how many specimens he had by listing them with letter bullets. Each specimen was represented by a different letter; even multiple specimens from a single locality were represented by a different letters (e.g. a-c). He did not designate types, so if multiple letters are given, then the specimens should be considered STS; if a single letter is listed, this one specimen should be regarded as the HT. The only exception to this is when the specimens were deposited in museums other than the BMNH (e.g. Melbourne), then he did not use his lettering system, and all specimens should be regarded as STS. At no time does he indicate the sex of any of the specimens. Here again, someone has placed "type" labels on some of the specimens. These have not been published, and so should not be considered as valid type designations. In a few cases, Walker’s types are missing. The following anecdote gives an explanation for why some types have not been located (Butler 1876). "Mr Walker comes one day and describes a new species; but, owing to the lateness of the hour, or some other cause, omits to label it as a type; the next time he comes to the collection he continues his MS., and, finding this species without a label forthwith redescribes it. This will, I think, account for several instances which I have noticed of evidently the same species described twice over in consecutive pages of Walker’s Catalogues." Citations: Swainson (1840), Anonymous (1874a, b, 1875), Carrington (1874), Newman (1874a, b, 1875, 1907), Saunders (1874), Strecker (1878), Distant (1907), Essig (1931), Musgrave (1932), Osborn (1937), Lizer y Trelles (1947), Papavero (1975), and Evenhuis (2011).
Wallengren, Hans Daniel Johan (b. 1823; d. Oct. 24, 1894, Farhult, Sweden) - Some of his collection resides in Museum Malmö, Malmö, Sweden (MUMS); some may be in Lund Museum and some may be in NHRS. Citations: Bergroth (1874), Anonymous (1895a, b), Aurivillius (1895), Kraatz (1895), McLachlan (1895) and Musgrave (1932).
Westwood, John Obadiah (b. Dec. 22, 1805, Sheffield, England; d. Jan. 2, 1893, Oxford, England) - Was a Hope professor at Oxford University where he worked on all orders of insects. Published "An Introduction to the Modern Classification of Insects" (1839-1840). Collection is conserved in the Oxford University Museum (OXUM), although Blöte (1931, 1934, 1935, 1936, 1938, 1945, 1965), in his series of catalogs contained in the Leiden collection (RMNH) indicated that there were a number of cotypes of Westwood's species in the RMNH. Citations: Swainson (1840), Strecker (1878), Godman (1892), Anonymous (1893a-e), Bethune (1893), Distant (1893), Cambridge (1893), Dohrn (1893), McLachlan (1893), Sandahl (1893), Wandolleck (1893), Weir (1893), Kraatz (1894), Bordas (1923), Howard (1930), Musgrave (1932), Neave (1933), and Papavero (1975).
White, Adam D. (b. Apr. 24, 1817, Edinburgh; d. Jan. 4, 1879, Glasgow) - Collection deposited in the Museum of Natural History, London (BMNH). Citations: Anonymous (1879a-d), Dunning (1879, 1880), McLachlan s(1879), Musgrave (1932), and Miller (1973).
Wolff, J. F. (1778-1806) - German. His most important work was produced in two languages, the latin version was titled Icones Cimicum Descriptionibus Illustratae, and the german version was titled Abbildungen der Wanzen mit Beschreibungen. Both were published in five volumes from 1800 to 1811. The two versions had similar, but not identical, pagination. Most types are probably lost, but some may be in the Sturm Collection, in Munich.
Wollaston, Thomas Vernon (b. Mar. 9, 1822; d. Jan. 4, 1878, Teignmouth) - Most of collection is probably in the Museum of Natural History, London (BMNH). Citations: Anonymous (1878a-e, 1879, 1882), Kraatz (1878), E.C.R. (1878), Westwood (1878), and Musgrave (1932).
Wygodzinsky, Petr Wolfgang (b. Oct. 5, 1916, Bonn, Germany; d. Jan. 27, 1987, Middletown, NY, USA) - Worked on several groups, but especially the Reduviidae. S&S: "Collection deposited American Museum of Natural History, New York." See Schuh & Herman (1988) for biography and bibliography.
David A. Rider
updated: 04 Apr 2018
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