Some Hexapods which are very primitive in other respects happen to be also Apterous, but this cannot be held to prove that the possession of wings is not a primitive character of Hexapods (compare the case of the Struthious Birds).
When the facile tendency of Arthropoda to develop tracheal air-tubes is admitted, it becomes probable that the tracheae of Hexapods do not all belong to one original system, but may be accounted for by new developments within the group. Whether the primitive tracheal system of Hexapoda was a closed one or open by serial stigmata in every somite remains at present doubtful, but the intimate relation of the system to the wings and tracheal gills cannot be overlooked.
Lamarck, however, appears not to have insisted on this name Hexapoda, and so the class of Pterygote Hexapods came to retain the group-name Insecta, which is, historically or etymologically, no more appropriate to them than it is to the classes Crustacea and Arachnida.
It was conceived by Huxley, among others, that the same number of cephalic somites would be found to be characteristic of all the diverse classes of Arthropoda, and that the somites, not only of the head but of the various regions of the body, could be closely compared in their numerical sequence in classes so distinct as the Hexapods, Crustaceans and Arachnids.
There is, however, good embryological evidence in some Hexapods of the existence of a seventh somite, the supra-lingual, occurring between the somite of the mandibles and the somite of the first maxillae (4).