Center for Systematic Entomology, Gainesville, Florida


Date of this Version



Stefano Ziani, Subsequent spelling cavolinii for Scarabaeus cavolini Petagna, 1792 (currently Copris hispanus cavolinii) to be maintained as prevailing usage (Coleoptera: Scarabaeoidea: Scarabaeidae: Coprini). Insecta Mundi 0777: 1–5


Copyright held by the author(s). This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons, Attribution Non-Commercial License,

Published in 2020 by Center for Systematic Entomology, Inc. P.O. Box 141874 Gainesville, FL 32614-1874 USA


The specific name in Scarabaeus cavolinii Petagna, 1792 (currently Copris hispanus ssp. cavolinii) (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Coprini) is an incorrect subsequent spelling—the original spelling is cavolini—but, because of its prevailing usage here documented, is to be preserved.

In 1792, Petagna described Scarabaeus cavolini (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) as a tribute to the famous Italian biologist Filippo Cavolini (1756–1810), whose Latinized name was Philippus Cavolinus (Petagna 1785; Smith 1804). To dedicate the new species to him, Petagna (1792) declined the name to the genitive singular case of the second Latin declension, which is Cavolini.

The original spelling “cavolini” was maintained until Balthasar (1963) who used the incorrect spelling “cavolinii”, without an explicit statement of intention. Oddly enough, Balthasar (1963) spelled the name “cavolinii” in the index of his book, whereas in the text he used the original spelling “cavolini”. Also, Dellacasa (1968) used the subsequent spelling “cavolinii”, stating that since the species was dedicated to Filippo Cavolini, the name had to end with the double “i”.

Since then, the spelling “cavolinii” has been used by the most authors dealing with the subject. Very recently, Zidek (2020) used “cavolini” because “prevailing usage of the subsequent spelling cavolinii has not been officially demonstrated”.

Zidek (2020) is right, and in this paper the prevailing usage of the spelling “cavolinii” is presented.