I see this latin word used in many botany names as the species name, of genus-species. Google translate said 'National Forest'. I'm skeptical.

What is the translation to English of engelmannii?

Ophioglossum engelmannii,


1 Answer 1


It means Engelmann's, using the Latinized form of that name, Engelmannius. Engelmann is a common German surname, but the likely namesake of the plants you encountered is Georg Engelmann, a prolific German-American botanist.

Google Translate shines as usual.

  • Today, the Wikipedia page you link says: "He is commemorated in the names of several plants, including Engelmann Oak (Quercus engelmannii), Engelmann Spruce (Picea engelmannii), Apache Pine (Pinus engelmannii), Engelmann's quillwort or Appalachian quillwort (Isoetes engelmannii), and Engelmann's Prickly-pear (Opuntia engelmannii)." Apr 4, 2022 at 14:33
  • 2
    +1. I was thinking of writing an answer to say basically the same, before yours arrived. I'd only add that: 1) it is common practice in biological Latin for species naming to honor important naturalists this way, and 2) unlike everywhere else, in biology it is always accepted to regularly Latinize names (especially last names) by appending -us or -ius. (This gives place to strange cases of Romance names irregularly Latinized, like Chelonoidis niger donfaustoi instead of, say, C. n. domnifausti.)
    – Rafael
    Apr 4, 2022 at 15:28

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