On the Old Red Sandstone and its Fossil Fish in Forfarshire
As anything calculated to throw light on the peculiar fauna of the Old Red Sandstone period must be interesting to geologists, I send you a short notice of some fossils lately found in the flagstones of Forfarshire, which may aid in adding to our knowledge of the peculiarities of the creatures found in these rocks. Some six weeks ago, by far the finest specimen of Pterygotus anglicus yet found was discovered in the "pavement" quarries of Cannyllin: this superb specimen is now in the Arbroath
... in the Arbroath Museum. This fossil, coming clean out from the matrix in which it was imbedded, consists of all the body-segments, a part of the caudal plate being also preserved and well seen in the cast from which the fossil had been lifted. It shows no features absolutely new or hitherto unknown, but it is nevertheless very interesting, as exhibiting the manner in which both the dorsal and ventral portions of this creature had been covered and protected by strong sculptured plates. It also proves that Mr. D. Page was quite correct in the place which he latterly assigned to the curious duck-bill like plate with its wing-like appendages, which, as noticed in Hugh Miller's "Old Red Sandstone," occasioned the name of "Seraphim" to be applied to this fossil. It is found in situ, covering the under portions of the segment next the head. In all probability, as suggested by Mr. Page, it formed part of the sexual organs of this creature, and also a covering for the vent or anal opening, there being no vestige of any such opening in either the sub-caudal segment, in the portion of the caudal plate, or telson, preserved, or on the junction of these segments.