Description of the Skeleton of an Extinct Gigantic Sloth, Mylodon robustus, Owen, with observations on the osteology, natural affinities, and probable habits of the megatherioid quadrupeds in general.

  • Owen, Richard
  • London: Sold by John van Voorst 1842


SKU: 4113 Category: Tags: ,


FIRST EDITION, 4to, pp. 176 + 24 plates (4 folding) each with a descriptive leaf of letterpress (the last plate with two such leaves). One plate (XXIV) present in duplicate. Original wave-patterned brown cloth. Some foxing and spotting, a few plates soiled at edges, repairs to folds of largest plate, flyleaf and title-page loosening. Binding soiled and plainly rebacked, hinges relined, extremities worn. Presentation inscription to title-page: ‘For the Library of the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland from the Council of the College’, signed by E J A Trimmer (secretary), stamps of the same library to title-page and first leaf of text (the collection dispersed between 2011 and 2015).


A significant monograph on a skeleton brought from Argentina to the Royal College of Surgeons in London, identified by Richard Owen (1804-1892) in one of his 'important contributions to both palaeontology and comparative anatomy', namely 'that of the Mylodon (and the subsequent classification of the whole of the extinct and living Edentata)' (ODNB). Owen's innovations made him 'a palaeontologist whose seemingly magical success in recreating the long-extinct vertebrates depended upon collaborative data from both the anatomy of the living and the fragmentary fossil evidences of the past' (ODNB).

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