Which side of the tree is more basal?

  title={Which side of the tree is more basal?},
  author={F. Krell and P. Cranston},
  journal={Systematic Entomology},
When a tree is rooted, it has a base. Everything near that base is basal. A clade branching off near the base is a basal clade, isn’t it? Does this make sense? No, it doesn’t. As editors of Systematic Entomology we regularly receive discussions of ‘basal’ clades or taxa. We find them in a great proportion of submitted papers and even in a widely used textbook (Forey et al., 1992: 134; eliminated from the second edition). Google found 100 hits for ‘the most basal clade’ and seventy-five for ‘the… Expand
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