River-Pollution in England

1885 Science  
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more » ... out Early Journal Content at http://about.jstor.org/participate--jstor/individuals/early-journal--content. JSTOR is a digital library of academic journals, books, and primary source objects. JSTOR helps people discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content through a powerful research and teaching platform, and preserves this content for future generations. JSTOR is part of ITHAKA, a not--for--profit organization that also includes Ithaka S+R and Portico. For more information about JSTOR, please contact support@jstor.org. 72 SCIE gathered in the same middle cretaceous strata of ' western Kansas' referred to a moment ago. Prized more highly than even these, however, are the hundreds of skeletons, or parts of skeletons, of gigantic walking and swimming reptiles, herbivorous and carnivorous, which inhabited the cretaceous ocean, and basked upon the shores of the islands of that age, now forming the heights of the Rockies. Among the earliest were disclosed wonderfully preserved bones of the class of mosasauroid reptiles,-a group, which, though rare in Europe, here attained an enormous development, both in numbers and in variety of forms. Nearly seventeen hundred individuals, of this kind of giant-reptile alone, stand on the museum's catalogue. The land-forms were even more terrible to the imagination, though their food was vegetable, and their disposition probably peaceful. One such sauropodan dinosaur shown to the public was sixty feet in length, and in general form came nearer to a crocodile than any thing else. A thigh-bone, lying in an exhibition case, measures six feet in length and is solid; so that it was well able to support the weight of the monster as it rose, kangaroo-fashion, on its hind-legs, to browse its food or to look about it. In another colossal reptile (Apatosaurus) of nearly equal proportions, one of the neckvertebrae is shown which is three and a half feet in diameter; while the ponderous bones of Brontosaurus prove, that, when living, the animal must have weighed twenty tons or more. The smallest part of it is the head; the skull and brain being more diminutive, in proportion, than in the case of any other animal now known. It had no weapons of offence or defence, nor even any armor; but in another genus (Stegosaurus) approaching it in bulk, though of more compact form, the body was protected by massive plates, and armed with long spines. This exaggeration of a cross between a snapping-turtle and a hedge-hog possessed a singularity in structure, since in one of the vertebrae of the haunch is a large nerve-cavity, which contained a second or posterior brain, supplementing' the extraordinarily small nerve-centre in the skull. This feature has no parallel in the animal kingdom. To Professor Marsh's personal collection somewhat has been added at the museum by the U. S. geological survey, which will become the publisher of the outcome of his studies now in progress. A score or so of assistants are constantly on duty, either in study, or in the 72 SCIE
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