Ammonite fossil, 16th century

Ammonite fossil, 16th century


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Ammonite fossil. Woodcut artwork of a split stone, revealing an ammonite fossil. The Latin text refers to this as a 'ram's horn'. Ammonites, now extinct, were marine invertebrate molluscs with a spiral shell. Most were less than 20 centimetres across. Ammonites first appear in the fossil record around 400 million years ago and became extinct at the end of the Cretaceous Period 65 million years ago. This artwork is from 'Historia novi et admirabilis' (1598) by the Swiss botanist and naturalist Johann Bauhin (1541-1613). The fourth volume included 210 artworks of minerals and fossils.

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