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Dinosaurs and Other Extinct Saurians: A Historical Perspective

Product Code: SP343
Series: GSL Special Publications - print copy
Author/Editor: Edited by R T J Moody, E Buffetaut, D Naish and D M Martill
Publication Date: 28 October 2010
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Special Publication 343

The discovery of dinosaurs and other large extinct ‘saurians’—a term under which the Victorians commonly lumped ichthyosaurs, plesiosaurs, pterosaurs and their kin—makes exciting reading and has caught the attention of palaeontologists, historians of science and the general public alike. The papers in this collection go beyond the familiar tales about famous ‘fossil hunters’ and focus on relatively little-known episodes in the discovery and interpretation (from both a scientific and an artistic point of view) of dinosaurs and other inhabitants of the Mesozoic world. They cover a long time span, from the beginnings of ‘modern’ scientific palaeontology in the 1700s to the present, and deal with many parts of the world, from the Yorkshire coast to Central India, from Bavaria to the Sahara. The characters in these stories include professional palaeontologists and geologists (some of them well-known, others quite obscure), explorers, amateur fossil collectors, and artists, linked together by their interest in Mesozoic creatures.

Type: Book
Ten Digit ISBN: 1-86239-311-7
Thirteen Digit ISBN: 978-1-86239-311-0
Publisher: GSL
Binding: Hardback
Pages: 394
Weight: 1.10 kg


MOODY, R. T. J., BUFFETAUT, E., NAISH, D. & MARTILL, D. M. Dinosaurs and other extinct saurians: a historical perspective – introduction
EVANS, M. The roles played by museums, collections and collectors in the early history of reptile palaeontology
TORRENS, H. S. William Perceval Hunter (1812–1878), forgotten English student of dinosaurs-to-be and of Wealden rocks
NOÈ, L. F., LISTON, J. J. & CHAPMAN, S. D. ‘Old bones, dry subject’: the dinosaurs and pterosaur collected by Alfred Nicholson Leeds of Peterborough, England
FANTI, F. Life and ideas of Giovanni Capellini (1833–1922): a palaeontological revolution in Italy
MOODY, R. T. J. & NAISH, D. Alan Jack Charig (1927–1997): an overview of his academic accomplishments and role in the world of fossil reptile research
TURNER, S., BUREK, C. V. & MOODY, R. T. J. Forgotten women in an extinct saurian (man’s) world
SUBERBIOLA, X. P., RUIZ-OMEÑACA, J.-I., BARDET, N., PIÑUELA, L. & GARCÍA-RAMOS, J.-C. Wilhelm (Guillermo) Schulz and the earliest discoveries of dinosaurs and marine reptiles in Spain
CARRANO, M. T., WILSON, J. A. & BARRETT, P. M. The history of dinosaur collecting in central India, 1828–1947
BUFFETAUT, E. Spinosaurs before Stromer: early finds of spinosaurid dinosaurs and their interpretations
WHYTE, M. A., ROMANO, M. & WATTS, W. Yorkshire dinosaurs: a history in two parts
BOWDEN, A. J., TRESISE, G.R & SIMKISS, W. Chirotherium, the Liverpool footprint hunters and their interpretation of the Middle Trias environment
NAISH, D. Pneumaticity, the early years: Wealden Supergroup dinosaurs and the hypothesis of saurischian pneumaticity
WELLNHOFER, P. A short history of research on Archaeopteryx and its relationship with dinosaurs
SWITEK, B. Thomas Henry Huxley and the reptile to bird transition
HANSEN, K. L. A history of digit identification in the manus of theropods (including Aves)
OSI, A., PRONDVAI, E. & GÉCZY, B. The history of Late Jurassic pterosaurs housed in Hungarian collections and the revision of the holotype of Pterodactylus micronyx Meyer 1856 (a ‘Pester Exemplar’)
MARTILL, D. M. The early history of pterosaur discovery in Great Britain
WITTON, M. P. Pteranodon and beyond: the history of giant pterosaurs from 1870 onwards
LE LOEUFF, J. Art and palaeontology in German-occupied France: Les Diplodocus by Mathurin Méheut (1943)
LISTON, J. J. 2000 A.D. and the new ‘Flesh’: first to report the dinosaur renaissance in ‘moving’ pictures
TAYLOR, M. P. Sauropod dinosaur research: a historical review


Tom J. A. Reijers

This volume is closed with an entertaining review of how our understanding of dinosaurs developed and how reconstructions helped in achieving realistic images.
This volume is broad in its approach, shows a large variety of aspects of dinosaur investigations, is history oriented and thus fills a gap in existing literature on sauropods. The book is well organised with relevant and to the point contributions. It should not be missed by those interested in the lengthy discovery of ichthyosaurs, plesiosaurs, pterosaurs and their kin from Victorian times onwards. Wholeheartedly recommended.

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