Devillers, P. & Devillers-Terschuren, J. 2013.- Les Ophrys de Joseph Pitton de Tournefort. Natural. belges 94 (Orchid. 26): 245-280.

Abstract. Devillers, P. & Devillers-Terschuren,  J. 2013 – Joseph Pitton de Tournefort’s Ophrys [Natural. belges 94 (Orchid. 26): 245-280]. The voyage in the Greek archipelago and Anatolia undertaken in 1700-1702 by the French botanist and physician Joseph Pitton de Tournefort, the artist Claude Aubriet and the German physician André de Gundelsheimer, commissioned by the king of France Louis XIV, was one of the first great scientific expeditions which built in Western European culture a vision of the natural wonders of the world. Six species of Ophrys were described on the basis of material gathered by the expedition, five of them, Ophrys iricolor, O. villosa, O. umbilicata, O. ferrum-equinum, O. mammosa, by René-Louiche Desfontaines, the sixth, O. episcopalis, by Jean-Louis Marie Poiret. All six had been succinctly characterised in the pre-Linnean Corollarium institutionum rei herbariae of Tournefort (1703). There has been a widespread impression that the descriptions of Desfontaines (1807) and Poiret (1816) were based on specimens once preserved in Tournefort’s herbaria and now lost. We show that it is not the case. The holotypes of the species described by Desfontaines  are vélins painted by Aubriet, copied from his own field drawings, and included in the former collection of ‘Vélins du Roy’, now ‘Vélins du Muséum. They are in no way lost. The holotype of O. episcopalis is a reproduction, published in the in-8° edition of Tournefort’s ‘Relation d’un Voyage du Levant’ (Tournefort 1717c), of an engraving by Jean-Baptiste Boyer d’Eguilles, also based on a field drawing by Aubriet, a drawing that was separately reproduced by Aubriet on a vélin. The type locality of O. episcopalis, near Chania, Crete, on May 12, 1700, is well known because it is fully discussed in Tournefort’s ‘Relation d’un Voyage du Levant. The type localities of the other species are unknown since their encounter is never mentioned by Tournefort. We show, through an analysis of Tournefort’s trip account and a consideration of the flowering time of the species concerned, as well as of the climatic conditions at the time of the trip, that the most likely locality is the Aegean coast of Anatolia between Smyrna and Kusadasi in March-April 1702, and the next most likely one the eastern part of Samos in March 1702. Also possible, but less likely, is Chios, in the first half of March 1701. We evoke the nomenclatural consequences of this localisation. No ambiguity exists for O. iricolor, O. umbilicata and O. ferrum-equinum and the current application of the binomes is certainly correct. For O. villosa and O. mammosa it is desirable to arbitrarily fix the type locality, preferably to Aegean Anatolia, and to select epitypes so as to firmly attach O. mammosa to its present usage and to restrict O. villosa to the species pollinated by Eucera nigrilabis rufitarsis, thus durably protecting the current use of O. herae, O. leochroma and O. korae. Thus defined, O. villosa Desfontaines  is a plant mostly characteristic of continental Greece and Anatolia, with their near-shore islands. We reiterate our reasons for not considering it as conspecific with O. tenthredinifera and for regarding O. villosa, O. dictynnae, O. leochroma, O. ulyssea and O. korae, as well as a few as yet unnamed species, as forming a monophyletic eastern subgroup within the O. tenthredinifera group.

Key Words: Orchidaceae, Ophrys, O. iricolor, O. villosa, O. dictynnae, O. leochroma, O. ulyssea, O. korae, O. tenthredinifera subsp. sanctae-marcellae, O. tenthredinifera, O. episcopalis, O. umbilicata, O. ferrum-equinum, O. mammosa, Eucera nigrilabis rufitarsis, E. dimidiata, E. kullenbergi, E. albofasciata, E. bidentata, holotypes, Vélins du Muséum, Joseph Pitton de Tournefort, Claude Aubriet, René-Louiche Desfontaines, Jean-Louis Marie Poiret, Jean-Baptiste Boyer d’Eguilles, Louis Phélypeaux de Pontchartrain, Greek archipelago, Anatolia, Smyrna, KuŁsadasi, Samos, Chios, Crete, phenology, climate change, little ice age, Maunder minimum.