Geology, Palaeontology, Progress, Species, Extinction, Exploration, Biogeography
Describes the pterodactyl in detail, using an engraving based on a specimen in the British Museum, and contrasting it with the modern flying lizard, Draco volans. Notes that the 'singular creatures' described in this series of articles may 'belong to the earliest population of our earth, as they are found in strata supposed to have been formed in a very remote era'. Refers to the existence of palaeontological specimens from later epochs, but defies the reader to discover any similar creatures alive at the present day. Considers the 'succession of species' to be 'the strongest point in geology'. Observes: 'We do not think [...] that the most enterprising of our naturalists will ever discover one of the animals alluded to, amongst those which now exist'. (326) Gives a lengthy extract from Georges Cuvier relating to the improbability of previously unknown species of large quadruped being found in remoter parts of the world.
© Science in the Nineteenth-Century Periodical Project, Universities of Leeds and Sheffield, 2005 - 2020
Printed from Science in the Nineteenth-Century Periodical: An Electronic Index, v. 4.0, The Digital Humanities Institute <http://www.sciper.org> [accessed ]