Class (biology)  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

In biological classification, class is

  • a taxonomic rank. Other well-known ranks are life, domain, kingdom, phylum, order, family, genus, and species, with class fitting between phylum and order. As for the other well-known ranks, there is the option of an immediately lower rank, indicated by the prefix sub-: subclass (Latin: subclassis).
  • a taxonomic unit, a taxon, in that rank. In that case the plural is classes (Latin classes)

The composition of each class is determined by a taxonomist. Often there is no exact agreement, with different taxonomists taking different positions. There are no hard rules that a taxonomist needs to follow in describing a class, but for well-known animals there is likely to be consensus. For example, dogs are usually assigned to the phylum Chordata (animals with notochords); in the class Mammalia; in the order Carnivora.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Class (biology)" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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