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The Great Fossil Enigma: The Search for the Conodont Animal,9780253006042

The Great Fossil Enigma: The Search for the Conodont Animal

by
ISBN13:

9780253006042

ISBN10:
025300604X
Format:
Hardcover
Pub. Date:
11/8/2012
Publisher(s):
Indiana Univ Pr
List Price: $45.00

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Summary

Stephen Jay Gould borrowed from Winston Churchill when he described the conodont animal as a "riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma." This animal confounded science for more than a century. Some thought it a slug, others a fish, a worm, a plant, even a primitive ancestor of ourselves. The list of possibilities grew and yet an answer to the riddle never seemed any nearer. Would the animal that left behind these miniscule fossils known as conodonts ever be identified? Three times the animal was "found," but each was quite a different animal. Were any of them really the one? In this book, Simon J. Knell takes the reader on a journey through 150 years of scientific thinking, imagining, and arguing. Slowly the animal begins to reveal traces of itself: its lifestyle, its remarkable evolution, its witnessing of great catastrophes, its movements over the surface of the planet, and finally its anatomy. Today the animal remains perhaps the most disputed creature in the zoological world.


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