The goldfinch was one of the birds described and illustrated by Swiss naturalist Conrad Gesner in his Historiae animalium of 1555. The first formal description was by Carl Linnaeus in the 10th edition of his Systema Naturae published in 1758. He introduced the binomial name, Fringilla carduelis. Carduelis is the Latin word for a goldfinch. The genus Carduelis was introduced by the French zoologist Mathurin Jacques Brisson in 1760 by tautonomy based on Linneus's specific epithet. Modern molecular genetic studies have shown that the European goldfinch is closely related to the citril finch, (Carduelis citrinella) and the Corsican finch, (Carduelis corsicana).