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Re: Shaochilong maortuensis: "Chilantaisaurus" no more...




> Shaochilong translates as "Shark tooth dragon", and thus is
> basically a Chinese translation of Carcharodontosaurus!


_Shaochilong_ is a brilliant name.  The previous unofficial genus name (nomen 
nudum) for _"Chiliantaisaurus" maortuensis_ (which, like Tom, I won't mention 
here) has the exact same meaning as _Alxasaurus_.


Stop reading now if you don't wish to be bombarded by nomenclatural trivia ...


OK, you've been warned.


Apparently Stromer explicitly named _Carcharodontosaurus_ after the great white 
shark (_Carcharodon_), due to similarities in tooth morphology.  The word 
*karkharos* (Gk) pops up in quite a few shark names, both living and fossil: 
e.g., _Carcharodon_, _Carcharias_, _Carcharocles_ (= the extinct giant 
'mega-toothed' shark).  So I had assumed that *karkharos* meant 'shark'.  But 
having crossed paths with a few shark experts I learned that *karkharos* 
actually means 'jagged' or 'ragged'.  So the genus _Carcharodon_ literally 
translates as "jagged tooth" or "ragged tooth".  


Thus, although carcharodontosaurids are known as 'shark-toothed reptiles' or 
'shark-toothed lizards', this is not the literal meaning of 
_Carcharodontosaurus_.  Following Stromer's intent, _Carcharodontosaurus_ means 
"_Carcharodon_ [great white shark] lizard".  



Cheers

Tim