Discover dinosaurs;Who's who;Discovery series

16th July 1999 at 01:00
A closer look. Here's the first of our series for the summer. It 'll help you make more of your holidays, will encourage you and your family to play detective and to get out and about. (Or you could always keep these pages for September)

Gideon Mantell

If anyone "discovered" dino-saurs, it has to be Gideon and Mary Mantell. In 1822, Mary found some fossil teeth in a pile of quarry rock. Her husband, a doctor and amateur palaentologist, realised they had come from a large plant-eating animal. Further investigations revealed the rock to be millions of years old and the teeth belonged to a prehistoric reptile he called "iguanodon" - iguana tooth.

Louis Dollo

In the Brussels Museum of Natural History, Dollo worked on a large collection of iguanodon skeletons found in 1878 in a coalmine. He studied not only the skeletons, but the other fossils found in the mine, in an attempt to build up a picture of the environment in which the dinosaurs lived.

Richard Owen

As First Super-intendent of the Natural History Museum in London, Owen was an expert in animal anatomy. He looked at existing fossil remains, including iguanodon and megalosaurus, and in 1841 announced that they belonged to a group of prehistoric reptiles which he called "dinosaurs" from the Greek deinos - terrible and sauros - lizard.

Jack Horner

As curator of palaeontology at the Museum of the Rockies in Montana, Dr John Horner has made particularly important discoveries connected with dinosaur eggs and nests, including finding the first dinosaur embroyos. Author of many books and papers, his claim to popular fame lies in the fact that he was the technical advisor to Steven Spielberg for Jurassic Park and The Lost World.

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