Phlegra hentzi (Marx, 1890) - Jumping Spider
The twists and turns of a given species' synonomy may be confusing while at the same time provide insights into both the science and politics of arachnology. Hentz published the original description and drawing for this species in 1846 as Attus leopardus. But leopardus had already been taken so Hentz's nomenclature was replaced in part by Marx (1890) who honored Hentz with the new name Attus hentzi. The presently accepted name Phlegra hentzi places this species in the genus proposed by Simon in 1876. But this is only part of the story. Most authors did not agree with Marx's evaluation and Hentz's original name (later in combination with Simon's Phlegra) continued to be used throughout the 20th Century with the added twist that by the 1940s arachnologists decided this spider was identical to the widespread Eurasian spider Phlegra fasciata. In 2002 Logunov sorted through the history and redescribed Phlegra hentzi making it the sole North American representative of this large (76 species) Old World genus.
Hentz, 1846; Simon, 1876; Marx, 1890
Massachusetts - First State / County Records
- ♦ J. H. Emerton Coll./MCZ - *Phlegra hentzi - Hampshire (Mt. Tom), July 1873 - Catalog #27728
- ♦ J. H. Emerton Coll./MCZ - P. h. - Norfolk (Milton), July 1889 - Catalog #27727
- ♦ J. H. Emerton Coll./MCZ - P. h. - Middlesex (Tyngsboro), May 1912 - Catalog #27719
- ♦ Connecticut - P. fasciata - Kaston, 1948: 461, 2 records
*While the MCZ database uses Phlegra hentzi, Emerton's records (1891) refer to this spider as Phlegra leopardus. See discussion above.
Logunov, D. V. 1999. Redefinition of the genera Marpissa C. L. Koch, 1846 and Mendoza Peckham & Peckham, 1894 in the scope of the Holarctic fauna (Araneae, Salticidae). Revue Arachnologique 13: 25-60.