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Kutnahorite versus Kutnohorite

Posted by Thomas  
Thomas July 25, 2003 10:24PM
Hello from Germany

I just stumbled about the mineral name Kutnohorite ( = Kutnahorite) and wonder, why the "a" was changed to an "o" in the mineral name. From my knowledge the type locality of Kutnahorite is Kutna Hora (= Kuttenberg in german), about some 70 km east of Prague in Bohemia. So the proper name should read Kutnahorite and not Kutnohorite

Any explanation for the misleading "o" ?

Glück Auf

Marco July 26, 2003 05:04AM
Hi, Thomas

For me too Kutnahorite should be the right term


Rob Woodside July 26, 2003 07:33AM
As usual Thomas makes perfect sense. I have not a lot of carbonate literature, but Fleischer lists it with an "o" and the first edition of the encyclopedia lists it with an "a", as does Dana 7 vol 2. I'll bet the IMA lists it with an "a" and eagle eye Thomas has found a Fleischer error that has crept in here.
David Von Bargen July 26, 2003 01:59PM
The Handbook of Mineralogy, Dana 8, Encyclopedia of Minerals 2, and Hey 3 all list it with an "o". From Hey: it appears as if it was with an "o" from the abstract in Neues Jahrbuch Min. in 1903 (kutnohorit). It appears as if the original description was by A. Bukovsky (1901) in Anz. III Congr. bohm. Naturf Aerzte.
Uwe July 26, 2003 02:10PM
I had also wondered about this for years but never bothered to check why the spelling is apparently wrong since a long time.
Thanks to all for shedding some light on this issue!

Rob Woodside July 26, 2003 06:47PM
Thanks David. Good thing I didn't change it and no one took my bet
Marco July 26, 2003 08:23PM
I must cover my head with ash..
Rob, David and Uwe are right.
Usually here we use to say "Kutnahorite", it sounds right for its original locality... but also in the reference of our localities in Valdarno it is used the term Kutnohorite! Bini B., Menichetti S.(1985): Kutnohorite from Levane, Upper Valdarno, (Italy) . Periodico di Mineralogia, n. 54 (pp. 61-66)


Jim Ferraiolo July 27, 2003 12:35AM
Fleischer's 1966 Index of New Mineral Names, Discredited Minerals and Changes in Mineralogical Nomenclature in Volumes 1-50 of the American Mineralogist", sort of an early Glossary, spells is "kutnahorite".

Mike's 1971 Glossary spells it "kutnahorite",
but the 1975 edition has: Kutnahorite = Kutnohorite.
The1980 edition has: Kutnohorite (in bold), Kutnahorite, then the composition.
1983 edition has Kutnohorite (bold), the composition, Kutnohorite
1985 edition has Kutnohorite (bold), (Kutnahorite), then the composition
1991 is the same as 1985
1999 edition only lists Kutnohorite, but Joe Mandarino eliminated all the synonyms to reduce the size of the volume.

I also checked the Ford-Fleischer file (published by USGS years ago). In it Mike has a 1970 reference with the "kutnahorite", but a 1973 Min.Record, p62-66 listed as "kutnohorite" on the reference line. I don't have that reference to check Cook's spelling.

Hey 2 (1962) lists "Kutnohorite" as the preferred spelling, with "Kutnahorite" as a "Variant of Kutnohorite".

It appears the preferred, though incorrect spelling, is Kutnohorite. Of course a quick search of GeoRef (through 2000) show both spelling being used.

Chet Lemanski July 27, 2003 02:42PM
Kutnohorite seems to dominate and that is all that I have ever used. I have also wondered where it went wrong.

Krister July 28, 2003 07:17AM
One more for the a-team!
The IMA catalogue site lists it as "kutnahorite". The original reference is:
Bukovsky A: Anz. III Congr.Böhm.Naturforsch. und Aerzte, Prag (1901) p. 338

marco July 28, 2003 09:39AM
Other with "a"


Peacor, D. R., Essene, E. J., and Gaines A. M. 1987a
Petrologic and crystal-chemical implications of cation order-disorder in kutnahorite
. American Mineralogist, 72, 319-328. *


Cancian G., Princivalle F. - Kutnahorite from Caverna Pocala soil (Trieste Karst, Italy). pp. 15-20. Periodico di Mineralogia, vol. 60, 1991 - Roma pp. 15-20

14 - 15 May, 2003
14 May, Wednesday, 15.00 – 15.45 Poster session
Vassileva M., S. Dobrev, Zh. Damyanov

Bill Shelton July 31, 2003 10:05AM
It seems so annoying - but one is correct, with an "a" while the other is an incorrect synonym that is perhaps based on the sound of this word. We ought to try and use correct terminology for all of our labels and publications. Bill
Jim Ferraiolo July 31, 2003 11:23AM
Nickel & Nichols' MINERAL database lists Kutnohorite(with an "o") as the preferred spelling, and kutnahorite (with an "a") as a variant spelling. This is an IMA recommended database, so coupled with the kutnohorite use in the Glossary, this might be considered the preferred IMA spelling. However, based on use in articles mentioned here and others referenced, either spelling is acceptable. Except maybe in competitions where the Glossary spelling is used for labels
Laszlo August 03, 2003 04:11PM
It does not matter who screwed up with the name, the IMA should be petitioned to change it to kutnahorite. In most languages it is kutnahorite as it should be. A locality name like Kutna Hora should be respected. Can you imagine if somebody changed franklinite to frenklinite?
Jim Ferraiolo August 07, 2003 11:56AM
At Lazlo's suggestion, I e-mailed Dr Ernie Nickel, former Vice-Chair of the IMA-CNMNMN, about this question.

Here is his response, which he has also forwarded to Dr Ferraris, present vice-Chair of the IMA-CNMNMN >>>>

"There doesn't seem to be an easy answer to the question of kutnahorite vs kutnohorite. To my knowledge, the IMA has not taken up this question, so it's every man for himself.

As you say, the name should be kutnahorite, after the type locality, and, in Dana's System, 7th edition, it is given that way. However, in the third edition of Hey's Mineral Index (1993) it is given as kutnohorite. As Max Hey was the vice-chairman of the CNMMN for some years, it seems that the apparent preference of the CNMMN for this variation probably stems from him.

According to the recently-published Volume 5 (2003) of the Handbook of Mineralogy, the original label was translated (I would say mistranslated) as kutnohorite. However, it doesn't say who this perpetrator was, but I suspect that it was the person who wrote the abstract in Neues. Jb. Min. (1903). Strictly speaking, one should go back to the original Czech publication, Anz. III Congr. bohm. Naturf. Aerzte (1901), p. 293 to see how the name was given there.

In the meantime, it seems that you can take your choice." <<<<<

I also checked back a little further in my references, and Hey in the 1962 edition also used kutnohorite. It is also kutnohorite in Dana 6, Appendix II (1909), probably picked up from the 1903 abstract.

When I e-mailed him for permission to post his response, Ernie stated that "I certainly agree with the suggestion that the CNMMN of the IMA should look into this matter, and resolve it once and for all." Hopefully, the inclusion of Dr Ferraris on Ernie's e-mail response will prompt the Commission to look at the spelling.

If anyone can turn up a copy of the 1901 Czech publication and can send a photcopy of it to me, that would be extremely helpful.

So, in the meantime, as Marco and others have shown, both spellings are being used throughout the literature, so "you can take your choice".

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