Nomenclature is the set of terms that form an area of knowledge . This word comes from Latin, but precisely from the union of the words nomem and calare (nomem means name and calare means to call). Thus, etymologically, nomenclature means the name of any element and usually refers to the vocabulary of a subject. Thus, any subject has a defined terminology, with its specific terms, its formulas, particular meanings, among others.
As a coherent system of words within a knowledge area, the nomenclature allows the systematization of this knowledge and the establishment of a logical order.
The chemical nomenclature
Although the term nomenclature is applied in any science or knowledge, it is in the field of chemistry that it has a special relevance, since the chemical elements have a definite order. The nomenclature of chemical compounds is still a way of writing a chemical substance or a compound. When talking about carbon dioxide, its chemical name is expressed by the formula CO2. This is due to a series of international rules by which chemists refer to other substances.
Chemical formulas contain positive or negative ions and both are expressed as numbers, which are derived from the oxidation number of the other chemical elements (oxidation numbers are also known as valences). In this way, the chemical name of an element is the inverse of its formula, even if the formula first writes the positive ion and then the negative ion; in the chemical name the negative ion is written first and then the positive.
Nomenclature in the context of the Soviet Union
During the period when Communism was in power in the Soviet Union, the term nomenclature was established to refer to the country’s leaders and to all people who were part of the administrative and bureaucratic system. In its origin, the Soviets used the term nomenclature descriptively to refer to the positions of the state . However, over time, the term was used in a derogatory sense, implying that those on the nomenclature list were elite and, therefore, privileged members of society .
Of course, the ingredients of the nomenclature belonged to the communist party. This circumstance expressed an evident contradiction, since Soviet communism advocated equality between people, but in practice some elites (members of the party that formed the nomenclature) had a privileged position.