Rise of the Dragon: Readings from Nature on the Chinese Fossil Record

Front Cover
Henry Gee
University of Chicago Press, 2001 - Science - 262 pages
Over the past decade, fossil finds from China have stunned the world, grabbing headlines and changing perceptions with a wealth of new discoveries. Many of these finds were first announced to English speakers in the journal Nature.Rise of the Dragon gathers together sixteen of these original reports, some augmented with commentaries originally published in Nature's "News and Views" section.

Perhaps the best known of these new Chinese fossils are the famous feathered dinosaurs from Liaoning Province, which may help end one of the most intense debates in paleontology—whether birds evolved from dinosaurs. But other finds have been just as spectacular, such as the minutely preserved (to the cellular level) animal embryos of the 670 million-year-old Duoshantuo phosphorites, or the world's oldest known fish, from the Chengjiang formation in southwestern Yunnan Province.

Rise of the Dragon makes descriptions and detailed discussions of these important finds available in one convenient volume for paleontologists and serious fossil fans.
 

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Contents

2 Animal Embryos in Deep Time
21
3 A Pipiscidlike Fossil from the Lower Cambrian of South China
25
4 An Early Cambrian Craniatelike Chordate
32
5 Lower Cambrian Vertebrates from South China
42
6 Catching the First Fish
53
7 A Primitive Fossil Fish Sheds Light on the Origin of Bony Fishes
56
8 Something Fishy in the Family Tree
64
9 An Exceptionally WellPreserved Theropod Dinosaur from the Yixian Formation of China
67
15 A Diapsid Skull in a New Species of the Primitive Bird Confuciusornis
123
16 A Chinese Triconodont Mammal and Mosaic Evolution of the Mammalian Skeleton
130
17 At the Roots of the Mammalian Family Tree
139
18 A New Symmetrodont Mammal from China and Its Implications for Mammalian Evolution
143
19 Biostratigraphy of New Pterosaurs from China
157
A Refugium for Relicts
160
21 A Refugium for Relicts?
164
22 Cretaceous Age for the Feathered Dinosaurs of Liaoning China
167

10 Feathers Filaments and Theropod Dinosaurs
83
11 A Therizinosauroid Dinosaur with Integumentary Structures from China
87
12 A Dromaeosaurid Dinosaur with a Filamentous Integument from the Yixian Formation of China
96
13 Two Feathered Dinosaurs from Northeastern China
105
14 When Is a Bird Not a Bird?
119
Supplementary Information
175
Contributors
251
Index
259
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Page 9 - Formation southern China, preserve an exceptional record of multicellular life from just before the Ediacaran radiation of macroscopic animals. Abundant thalli with cellular structures preserved in three-dimensional detail show that latest-Proterozoic algae already possessed many of the anatomical and reproductive features seen in the modern marine flora Embryos preserved in early cleavage stages indicate that the divergence of lineages leading to bilaterians may have occurred well before their macroscopic...
Page 235 - JR and Hopson, JA 1993. Basicranial evidence for early mammal phylogeny. Pp. 45-62. In, FS Szalay, MJ Novacek, and MC McKenna (Eds.), Mammal Phylogeny. Volume 1 . Springer Verlag, New York.

About the author (2001)

Henry Gee is a senior editor at Nature. He is the author of Before the Backbone: Views on the Origin of the Vertebrates and In Search of Deep Time: Beyond the Fossil Record to a New History of Life and the editor of Shaking the Tree: Readings from Nature in the History of Life, the last also published by the University of Chicago Press.

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