On the Skull, Brain, and Auditory Organ of a New Species of Pterosaurian (Scaphognathus Purdoni), from the Upper Lias near Whitby, Yorkshire

E. T. Newton
1888 Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Biological Sciences  
P lates 78.] I ntroductory. The Bev. D. W . P urdon, of Wolverhampton, obtained some years ago, from the Alum Shale-* at Lofthouse, near W hitby, the skull of a Pterodactyl. This was brought to me last autumn, much obscured by the surrounding hard matrix. As the specimen seemed likely to repay a careful study, the owner's permission was obtained to clear away more of the m a trix ; and to him my best thanks are due for the very courteous manner in which he left the fossil in my hands, to be
more » ... ted in whatever way was best calculated to develop its structure and add to its scientific value. By careful work with the chisel I succeeded in laying bare much more of the skull, and it has proved to be of unexpected value, and, for several reasons, of exceptional interest. In the first place, no Pterodactyl remains have previously been recorded from the Yorkshire Lias ; in the second place, the form is certainly new, and seems nearly related to the Continental Oolitic species, P. Again, this skull has undergone little or no compression, and consequently the natural relations of the bones are well preserved, and the structures of the basal portions, including the palate and back of the skull, are better shown than in any Pterosaurian from this side of the Atlantic hitherto described.! And still further, the form of the brain and parts of the auditory organ being preserved, their structure and relation to the entire skull can now be studied in a manner not previously possible. Description of Skull. This Pterodactyl skull, in its present condition, measures five-and-a-half inches in length (140 mm.) ; but, as the snout, from ju st in front of the nasal apertures, is * My colleague, Mr. B arrow, tells me this must be the Alum Shale of the Upper Lias. t The skull of Pteranodon longiceps, as given by Professor M arsh, seems to be in a very perfect condition; but it has not yet been fully described. See ' Amer.
doi:10.1098/rstb.1888.0019 fatcat:4vewvisuenf3dgdga6ozskhaou