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Dimitar Dimitrov taxon links Phylogenetic position of group is uncertainPhylogenetic position of group is uncertain[down<--]Pholcidae Interpreting the tree
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Tree from Bruvo-Madaric et al. (2005)
Containing group: Pholcidae


The term "Holocnemus group" was first used by Timm (1976) to refer to the genera Artema and Holocnemus. Later on other authors have included or excluded genera from the holocnemines without phylogenetic argumentation. Modern phylogenetic studies that included broad samples of pholcids and holocnemine genera (Huber, 2000; Bruvo-Madaric et al., 2005) have found it problematic to delimit this group and have suggested an informal use of the name holocnemines.


Several synapomorphies have been suggested for this group (Huber, 2000). These are: reduced pseudosegmentation of the leg tarsi, presence of a pointed cheliceral lamina, and a procursus brush. Nonetheless, genera that have some or all of these characters, such as Artema, were placed outside the core holocnemines when molecular data was added to the analyses (Bruvo-Madaric et al., 2005).

Discussion of Phylogenetic Relationships

The tree presented here comes from the phylogenetic study of Bruvo-Madaric et al. (2005). This is the phylogenetic treatment which included the widest taxonomic sampling of holocnemines and used both molecular and morphological data. Bruvo-Madaric et al. (2005) confirmed the close relationships between holocmenines and pholcines suggested earlier by Huber (2000). The genera Artema, Physocyclus and Trichocyclus, traditionally treated as holocnemines, were found to be closely related to each other (Bruvo-Madaric et al., 2005) but their relationship with the rest of the long legged Pholcidae remains uncertain.


Bruvo-Madaric B., Huber B.A., Steinacher A., Pass G. 2005. Phylogeny of pholcid spiders (Araneae:Pholcidae): combined analysis using morphology and molecules. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 37: 661-673.

Huber B.A. 2000. New World pholcid spiders (Araneae: Pholcidae): a revision at generic level. Bull. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. 254: 1–348.

Timm H. 1976. Die Bedeutung von Genitalstrukturen für die Klärung systematischer Fragen bei Zitterspinnen (Arachnida: Araneae: Pholcidae). Entomol. Germ. 3: 69–76.

About This Page

Dimitar Dimitrov
Zoological Museum, University of Copenhagen

Correspondence regarding this page should be directed to Dimitar Dimitrov at

Page: Tree of Life Holocnemines. Authored by Dimitar Dimitrov. The TEXT of this page is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License - Version 3.0. Note that images and other media featured on this page are each governed by their own license, and they may or may not be available for reuse. Click on an image or a media link to access the media data window, which provides the relevant licensing information. For the general terms and conditions of ToL material reuse and redistribution, please see the Tree of Life Copyright Policies.

Citing this page:

Dimitrov, Dimitar. 2009. Holocnemines. Version 12 February 2009 (under construction). http://tolweb.org/Holocnemines/135166/2009.02.12 in The Tree of Life Web Project, http://tolweb.org/

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