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Re: Brontosaurus (was Re: Trachodon)?



 > Could this similiar situation be compared to the Apatosaur\Brontosaur 
 > names. Wasn't Brontosaurus named to the specimine with the 'homemade'
 > type skull and Apatosaurus refered to the specimine w\o the skull and 
 > with the correct skull,


Nope.  The name change has nothing to do with the skull correction.
The name change actually occurred way back in the early years of
this century, it just never got into the popular books until recently.

What happened here is very simple, the name Apatosaurus was given to
one partial skeleton, and the name Brontosaurus to another, somewhat
less complete one at a later date.  Later another skeleton that was`
much more complete was assifned to Bronotsaurus and made the basis
for a detailed reconstruction.  This is what found its way into the
popular literature.

Then, a few years later it was determined that Apatosaurus and
Bronotsaurus were almost the same thing, and should be in one genus.
The rules require that when two genera are merged, the name for
the combined genus is the *older* of the two names.  In this case
that name is Apatosaurus.  Hence Brontosaurus has long been a junior
subjective synonym of Apatosaurus.

If people wish I can try to dig up my old letter with the detailed
history of this whole mess.

swf@elsegundoca.attgis.com              sarima@netcom.com

The peace of God be with you.