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Re: definitions

In a message dated 97-08-09 19:39:13 EDT, jpoling@dinosauria.com (Jeff
Poling) writes:

<< lagerstatten, adjective, describes a sedimentary deposit comprised of
 sediment of exceptionally fine grains.  Lagerstatten deposits often preserve
 the fine detail of fossils found within, such as the feathers of
 Archaeopteryx fossils from Solnhofen >>

This is a German plural noun, not an adjective, and is lamentably often
misspelled in English usage. The correct spelling is Lagerstaette, where the
"ae" represents "a-umlaut" and would be spelled this way here, except that
e-mail doesn't recognize umlauts that I've tried to send. The singular,
however, is Lagerstatt, without the umlaut and final e; the -en ending is an
inflection of the plural. Technically, since it's a German noun, it should
also always be capitalized, as in "Lagerstatt deposit," which is the way the
noun should be used in this context. A Lagerstatt deposit is one that
preserves what is thought to be an extensive, virtually complete
cross-section of the fauna that once lived at the locality, from insects and
other invertebrates to reptiles, mammals, and birds, in exceptional detail.