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Re: Sauropodz r kewl WAS: silly conversation on 2012 US presidential race
Lets not forget that the Ancients DID encounter, surprisingly often,
fossils. They even collected the fossils, described them, and put them
They tended to think that they were the bones of gigantic Heroes or
Monsters, so it's not quite what we'd like it to be. Perhaps the words
for these types of finds would make good taxonomic suffixes
On Mon, Apr 16, 2012 at 3:59 PM, David Marjanovic
>> Its not like Latin had phylogenetics, I've always heard that "saur"
>> can also refer to pretty much any reptile, I suspect if the Romans
>> had knowledge of tuataras, they'd use the term "saur" too.
> (That's Greek anyway, not Latin.)
>> I'm not sure what the [Greeks] would have called
>> salamanders/amphibians/crocodiles (would "saur" apply to any of
> Not to salamanders, AFAIK; the word _salamandra_ is Latin, BTW.
> Crocodiles... I hear they were occasionally included; anyway, _krokodeilos_
> is said to mean "pebble worm".
>> However, I'm quite sure that nobody who spoke [Ancient Greek] as
>> their native language would have used the term "saur" to describe
>> Basilosaurus (if they saw a living one)
> That's for sure, but *B.* was thought to be a giant snake when it was named,
Robert J. Schenck
Kingsborough Community College
Physical Sciences Department
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