Eriocheir sinensis was first described in 1853 by the French naturalist Henri Milne Edwards in Annales des Sciences Naturelles, série 3, volume 20.
A more detailed description appeared a year later in volume 7 of the Archives du Muséum d'Histoire Naturelle. This is often, incorrectly, cited as the authority for E. sinensis and it appears that H. Milne Edwards himself may have intended this description to appear first, as he cites figure 1 from it in the earlier publication.
However, according to the rules laid out in the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature, 1999, the correct authority of the species is Eriocheir sinensis H. Milne Edwards, 1853.
3 other species have also been assigned to the genus Eriocheir: