Reference numberRR/5/162
TitleReferee's report by Hugh Falconer, on a paper 'On the Archeopteryx of von Meyer, with a description of the fossil remains of a long-tailed species, from the lithographic stone of Solenhofen' by Richard Owen
Date20 December 1862
DescriptionRecommended for publication in the 'Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society'. Refers to work by Christian Erich Hermann von Meyer, Andreas Wagner and Staberlein [?]. Considers that Owen is a little too biased towards describing the specimen as a bird, rather than as a well-balanced, objective description. Other researchers have not given an opinion, or considered the specimen a 'featherd sautian' on account of other anatomical features, but the present author 'finds everything compatible with the inference that it must have been a "bird of flight"'. The paper appears hurried. Without the microscopical investigations of the bone the paper must be considered incomplete. Criticises the author for not following nomenclature rules in giving the fossil a new name of 'Archaeopteryx macrura, Owen' when the fossil had already been named 'Archeopteryx lithographica, Meyer' in 1861. 'The acquisition of the fossil by purchase, conveys no right to alter the earlier and published name'. Suggests reducing the size of some of the illustrations. Suggests there is no requirement for the life-restoration figure, or the embryological sketchs of modern birds. Notes that John Evans has recently described a skull found in the matix with the fossil, which should be referenced by the author in the finished paper.

Subject: Geology, Zoology and Palaeontology

[Published in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, 1863]
Physical descriptionLetter on paper
Digital imagesView item on Science in the Making
Access statusOpen
Related materialDOI: 10.1098/rstl.1863.0003 Vol.153 1863
Related records in the catalogueRR/5/161
Fellows associated with this archive
NA8083Owen; Sir; Richard (1804 - 1892)1804 - 1892
NA7096Falconer; Hugh (1808 - 1865)1808 - 1865
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