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Anthropomorpha is a defunct taxon which contained the manlike, or anthropoid, apes.[1]

The order was established by Carl Linnaeus in the first edition of his book Systema Naturae (1735) for genera Homo (humans), Simia (monkeys and apes in general) and Bradypus (sloths).[2] In the 1758 edition of the same book, Linnaeus discarded this name and began to use the word Primates, which has replaced Anthropomorpha completely.

The name is no longer considered valid, as the animals that were included within Anthropomorpha are now believed to belong to multiple clades. For example, two-toed sloths were included within Anthropomorpha,[3] but are now considered to be in the family Megalonychidae, which is not closely related to the primates.[4] The taxon Anthropomorpha was originally proposed by Carolus Linnaeus, although Linnaeus' archenemy, the Comte de Buffon, correctly rejected the combination of sloths and primates within the same order.[3]


  1. ^ Porter, N., ed. (1913). Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary. G & C. Merriam. 
  2. ^ Linnaeus, C. (1735). Systema naturae sive regna tria Naturae systematice proposita per classes, ordines, genera, & species. apud Theodorum Haak, Lugduni Batavorum. pp. s.p. 
  3. ^ a b Conniff, R. (December 30, 2007). "Forgotten, Yes. But Happy Birthday Anyway". New York Times. Retrieved 2008-08-22. 
  4. ^ Gardner, A. (2005). Wilson, D.E.; Reeder, D.M., eds. Mammal Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. p. 101. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494.