AskDefine | Define zoologists



  1. Plural of zoologist.
Zoology (from Greek ζῴον, zoon, "animal" + λόγος, "logos", "knowledge") is the biological discipline which involves the study of animals.


The pronunciation of "zoology" is /zoʊˈɑləʤɪ/; however, an alternative pronunciation is /zuˈɑləʤɪ/. Traditionally (and more properly), the word was pronounced with the first syllable rhyming with "toe", followed by "-ology". Recently, it has become more common to pronounce the first syllable as "zoo". The word zoology originates from the Greek zoion, meaning animal, and logos, meaning study.

Subfields of zoology

The study of animal life is, of course, ancient: but as 'zoology' it is relatively modern, for what we call biology was known as 'natural history' at the start of the nineteenth century. During the lifetime of Charles Darwin, natural history turned from a gentlemanly pursuit to a modern scientific activity. Zoology as we know it was first established in German and British universities. The institution of zoology training in British universities was mainly established by Thomas Henry Huxley. His ideas were centered on the morphology of animals: he was himself the greatest comparative anatomist of the second half of the nineteenth century. His courses were composed of lectures and laboratory practical classes; and his system became widely spread.
There was much left out by Huxley, especially the study of animals in their environment, which had been the main stimulus for both Darwin and Alfred Wallace (who both came up with the idea of natural selection). The fact that neither Darwin nor Wallace ever held a university teaching post may have contributed to this rather startling omission. Gradually Huxley's comparative anatomy was supplemented by other much-needed methods. The field of zoology in the twentieth century mainly comprised these approaches:
  1. Comparative anatomy studies the structure of animals.
  2. The physiology of animals is studied under various fields including anatomy and embryology
  3. The common genetic and developmental mechanisms of animals and plants is studied in molecular biology, molecular genetics and developmental biology
  4. Ethology is the study of animal behavior.
  5. The ecology of animals is covered under behavioral ecology and other fields
  6. Evolutionary biology of both animals and plants is considered in the articles on evolution, population genetics, heredity, variation, Mendelism, reproduction.
  7. Systematics, cladistics, phylogenetics, phylogeography, biogeography and taxonomy classify and group species via common descent and regional associations.
  8. The various taxonomically-oriented disciplines such as mammalogy, herpetology, ornithology identify and classify species, and study the structures and mechanisms specific to those groups. Entomology is the study of insects, by far the largest group of animals.
  9. Palaeontology, including all that may be learnt of ancient environments.

Systems of classification

Morphography includes the systematic exploration and tabulation of the facts involved in the recognition of all the recent and extinct kinds of animals and their distribution in space and time. (1) The museum-makers of old days and their modern representatives the curators and describers of zoological collections, (2) early explorers and modern naturalist travelers and writers on zoo-geography, and (3) collectors of fossils and palaeontologists are the chief varieties of zoological workers coming under this heading. Gradually, since the time of Hunter and Cuvier, anatomical study has associated itself with the more superficial morphography until today no one considers a study of animal form of any value which does not include internal structure, histology and embryology in its scope.
The real dawn of zoology after the legendary period of the Middle Ages is connected with the name of an Englishman, Edward Edward Wotton, born at Oxford in 1492, who practised as a physician in London and died in 1555. He published a treatise De differentiis animalium at Paris in 1552. In many respects Wotton was simply an exponent of Aristotle, whose teaching, - with various fanciful additions, constituted the real basis of zoological knowledge throughout the Middle Ages. It was Wotton's merit that he rejected the legendary and fantastic accretions, and returned to Aristotle and the observation of nature.
The most ready means of noting the progress of zoology during the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries is to compare Aristotle's classificatory conceptions of successive.

Notable zoologists

In alphabetical order by surname:

See also


zoologists in Afrikaans: Dierkunde
zoologists in Arabic: علم الحيوان
zoologists in Aragonese: Zoolochía
zoologists in Franco-Provençal: Zoologia
zoologists in Bengali: প্রাণিবিজ্ঞান
zoologists in Bosnian: Zoologija
zoologists in Breton: Loenoniezh
zoologists in Bulgarian: Зоология
zoologists in Catalan: Zoologia
zoologists in Czech: Zoologie
zoologists in Welsh: Sŵoleg
zoologists in Danish: Zoologi
zoologists in German: Zoologie
zoologists in Estonian: Zooloogia
zoologists in Modern Greek (1453-): Ζωολογία
zoologists in Spanish: Zoología
zoologists in Esperanto: Zoologio
zoologists in Basque: Zoologia
zoologists in Persian: جانورشناسی
zoologists in French: Zoologie
zoologists in Western Frisian: Soölogy
zoologists in Friulian: Zoologjie
zoologists in Irish: Zó-eolaíocht
zoologists in Galician: Zooloxía
zoologists in Korean: 동물학
zoologists in Hindi: प्राणी विज्ञान
zoologists in Upper Sorbian: Zoologija
zoologists in Croatian: Zoologija
zoologists in Ido: Zoologio
zoologists in Indonesian: Zoologi
zoologists in Interlingua (International Auxiliary Language Association): Zoologia
zoologists in Interlingue: Zoologie
zoologists in Ossetian: Зоологи
zoologists in Icelandic: Dýrafræði
zoologists in Italian: Zoologia
zoologists in Hebrew: זואולוגיה
zoologists in Javanese: Zoologi
zoologists in Kannada: ಪ್ರಾಣಿಶಾಸ್ತ್ರ
zoologists in Georgian: ზოოლოგია
zoologists in Kurdish: Zoolojî
zoologists in Ladino: Zoolojia
zoologists in Latin: Zoologia
zoologists in Latvian: Zooloģija
zoologists in Luxembourgish: Zoologie
zoologists in Lithuanian: Zoologija
zoologists in Hungarian: Zoológia
zoologists in Macedonian: Зоологија
zoologists in Malay (macrolanguage): Zoologi
zoologists in Dutch: Zoölogie
zoologists in Japanese: 動物学
zoologists in Norwegian: Zoologi
zoologists in Norwegian Nynorsk: Zoologi
zoologists in Narom: Zoologie
zoologists in Occitan (post 1500): Zoologia
zoologists in Low German: Zoologie
zoologists in Polish: Zoologia
zoologists in Portuguese: Zoologia
zoologists in Romanian: Zoologie
zoologists in Quechua: Suwuluhiya
zoologists in Russian: Зоология
zoologists in Scots: Zoology
zoologists in Albanian: Zoologjia
zoologists in Sicilian: Zuoluggìa
zoologists in Simple English: Zoology
zoologists in Slovak: Zoológia
zoologists in Slovenian: Zoologija
zoologists in Serbian: Зоологија
zoologists in Serbo-Croatian: Zoologija
zoologists in Finnish: Eläintiede
zoologists in Swedish: Zoologi
zoologists in Tamil: விலங்கியல்
zoologists in Tetum: Zoolojia
zoologists in Thai: สัตววิทยา
zoologists in Vietnamese: Động vật học
zoologists in Tajik: Зоология
zoologists in Turkish: Zooloji
zoologists in Ukrainian: Зоологія
zoologists in Urdu: حیوانیات
zoologists in Volapük: Nimav
zoologists in Yiddish: זאאלאגיע
zoologists in Contenese: 動物學
zoologists in Chinese: 动物学
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