Catalogue of the Mesozoic Plants in the British Museum (Natural History) The Cretaceous Flora


DR. MARIE STOPES set herself a severe task in deciding to include in the catalogue of Cretaceous plants an exhaustive bibliography and list of species. The list of species from Cretaceous beds, described up to December 31, 1910, occupying nearly two hundred pages, affords a striking illustration of the large amount of material in palreobotanical literature that serves no useful purpose. While acknowledging that a list of this kind is valuable as a source of information, it is difficult to repress a certain suspicion that the result obtained is scarcely a fair return for the labour expended. As Dr. Stopes continues her investigations the value of the list will be considerably increased by the addition of critical remarks on such of the records as come under her purview. As it stands the catalogue of names may mislead the unwary who have not learnt by experience to regard with distrust a large proportion of determinations based on fragments of fossil Angiosperms; but as a storehouse of bibliographical information the list will be of real service to students. In the Introduction Dr. Stopes gives a useful summary of literature dealing with Cretaceous floras, and the stratigraphical table is a particularly welcome contribution which will do much to clear up the confusion caused by the adoption of different terms for subdivisions of the Cretaceous system in different countries. The publication of a list of dates of the parts of Brongniart's “Histoire des végétaux fossiles” is a much needed step towards a greater uniformity in systematic work: in the preparation of this bibliographical no1e the author expresses her indebtedness to Mr. C. Davies Sherborn.

Catalogue of the Mesozoic Plants in the British Museum (Natural History). The Cretaceous Flora.

Part i., Bibliography, Alg. and Fungi. By Dr. Marie C. Stopes. Pp. xxiii + 285 + ii plates. (London: British Museum (Natural History): Longmans, Green and Co., 1913.) Price 12s.


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SEWARD, A. Catalogue of the Mesozoic Plants in the British Museum (Natural History) The Cretaceous Flora . Nature 94, 55 (1914).

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