(Trochilidae; Ϯ Red-billed Streamertail T. polytmus) L. trochilus either (1) a small woodland bird or (2) a riverside bird < Gr. τροχιλος trokhilos small bird mentioned by Aristotle, identified by later writers with the wren Nannus. The name was further used by Aristotle, Herodotus, Athenaios, Aristophanes, and Dionysios for the ‘crocodile-bird’ (so called because it fed on leeches from the open jaws of basking crocodiles), identified by later authors with the Egyptian Plover Pluvianus, the Spur-winged Plover Hoplopterus, or the Common Sandpiper Actitis. Its use for the Jamaican Red-billed Streamertail can only allude to the former identification and the hummingbird’s small size; "60. TROCHILUS.  Rostrum subulato-filiforme, incurvatum, capite longius: Mandibula superior vaginans inferiorem.  Lingua filiformis, bipartito-tubulosa  ... Trochili aviculæ minimæ; aliæ rostro recurvo, aliæ incurvo, aliæ recto. Mel e floribus hauriunt more Bombylii, nec plantis inhærent." (Linnaeus 1758); "Trochilus Linné, Syst. Nat., ed. 10, 1, 1758, p. 119. Type, by subsequent designation, Trochilus polytmus Linné. (G. R. Gray, List Gen. Bds., 1840, p. 14)." (Peters 1945, V, 56). Linnaeus's Trochilus comprised eighteen species (T. paradiseus, T. afer, T. Pella, T. Polytmus, T. forficatus, T. Colubris, T. Ourissia, T. Mosquitus, T. holosericeus, T. mellisugus, T. Tomineo, T. surinamensis, T. niger, T. mellivorus, T. ruber, T. Mango, T. cristatus, T. minimus).
Var. ThrochilusTrochillusTrochils.
Synon. Aithurus, Polytmus.
● (syn. Archilochus Ϯ Ruby-throated Hummingbird A. colubris). "In 1840, Gray designated T. polytmus Linn. as the type, but in 1855 changed the type to T. colubris Linn., which has been the universally recognized type ever since  ...  Article 30 [ICZN] renders it necessary to accept T. polytmus as the type of Trochilus, and some other name is necessary for the group universally known for more than half a century as Trochilus" (Allen 1908). Var. Trochylus.
● (syn. Phylloscopus Ϯ Chiffchaff P. collybita) "SYLVIA HIPPOLAIS.  Trochilus Minor.   Lesser Pettychaps, or Lesser Willow Wren, Chiff Chaff, or Chipator" (T. Forster 1817); "c. Sylvains muscivores, Sylvanæ muscivoræ, Temminck.  -  Le G. Trochilus, Pouillot, Nob.  -  Sylvia, Swains.  -  Ancien continent" (de La Fresnaye 1839).
● (syn. Recurvirostra Ϯ Pied Avocet R. avosetta) "86. TROCHILUS.*  Numenii species. LINN. gen. 59.  Recurvirostra Auctorum. LINN. ed. 6. gen. 56." (Moehring 1752); "86. KLUIT, in 't Latyn Trochilus.*  De [na boven staande] Krombek, Avosetta, der Schryveren. LINNAEUS. Syst. Nat. gesl. 56" (Moehring 1758).
● (syn. Sylvia Ϯ Eurasian Blackcap S. atricapilla) "RENNIE, following the example of his superiors, has made changes which no law of science can justify, as for Salicaria he has substituted Ripæcola, for Rubecula, Rhondella; for Silvia, Trochilus,* &c., and thus he formed a nomenclature for his own use, as it were, for of course, no one would follow him.  ...  *The worthy professor seems to be unaware that Trochilus is the latin generic name for the Colibrees or Humming-birds." (C. T. Wood 1837).   Var. Trochillus.

Search for more names on the Key to Scientific Names in Ornithology by James A. Jobling.
Recommended citation
Jobling, J. A. (2020). Key to Scientific Names in Ornithology. In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.) (2020). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 23 January 2020).