All about dinosaurs, fossils and prehistoric animals by Everything Dinosaur team members.
18 06, 2018

Megalosaurus bucklandii

By | June 18th, 2018|Dinosaur Fans, Main Page, Photos, Photos/Pictures of Fossils|0 Comments

Buckland’s Great Lizard

Whilst visiting the Oxford Museum of Natural History, we took the opportunity to take lots of photographs of the dinosaur exhibits.  Naturally, our attention was drawn to that part of the museum that featured Megalosaurus (M. bucklandii).

The Iconic Right Dentary (Lower Jaw) of Megalosaurus bucklandii

The lower jaw of Megalosaurus.

The partial dentary with teeth associated with Megalosaurus bucklandii.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

The photograph (above), shows the left side of the right dentary.  Megalosaurus (M. bucklandii) was the first member of the Dinosauria to be officially, scientifically described.  The name was first coined by the English surgeon James Parkinson in 1822 and Buckland published his description in 1824.  The jaw fossil was included in the original description by William Buckland, it has the classification number OUMNH J13505.  The right dentary is the designated lectotype, Buckland did not establish any holotype for M. bucklandii, instead he used several fossils, including the dentary to constitute the type fossil material for this species.  These fossils consisted of rib bones, bones from the hind limbs, vertebrae and elements from the pelvic girdle, together these fossils (the syntypes), describe the taxon.

18 06, 2018

Praising the Museum of Natural History in Oxford

By | June 18th, 2018|General Teaching|Comments Off on Praising the Museum of Natural History in Oxford

In Praise of the Museum of Natural History (Oxford)

Oxford as the county town of Oxfordshire (England), has many attractions.  It is of course, famous for its distinguished and highly respected university.  It is one of the oldest seats of learning (alongside Paris and Bologna), in the western world.  The Victorian poet Matthew Arnold (1822-1888), coined the phrase “the city of dreaming spires”, it is indeed a very awe-inspiring place with its beautiful architecture and stunning university colleges and buildings.

However, Oxford should not necessarily just be the haunt of academics and students.  For families, there is much to see and do in this historic part of England.  Take for example, the Museum of Natural History, it is free to enter (donations are suggested) and it provides a fantastic day out for young and old alike.

A View of the Ground Floor of the Natural History Museum (Oxford)

Oxford Museum of Natural History

A view from the first floor of the Oxford Museum of Natural History (Oxford).

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Stunning Architecture

The museum acts as a centre for scientific study for the University of Oxford.  It houses the University’s collection of palaeontological, geological and zoological specimens, including some of the very first dinosaur bones to be scientifically studied.  This collection is housed in a stunning example of neo-Gothic architecture, the ornate columns and use of copious amounts of glass provides a wonderfully spacious and well-lit learning area.  With visitor numbers estimated to be around 700,000 people a year, this well-laid out and beautifully appointed museum can get quite busy at times, but please note, the Natural History Museum (London), attracts approximately 5,000,000 visitors per annum.  The London museum can get extremely congested, in contrast, the Oxford University Museum of Natural History (OUMNH), especially shortly after opening at 10 am tends to be much quieter.

Founded in 1860

Founded in 1860, that’s twenty-one years before the Natural History Museum (London) opened its doors, the OUMNH has maintained its strong tradition to inform and educate and helps to underpin a varied programme of scientific research as well as playing a significant role in teaching.  The Museum provides an extensive array of family orientated activities and if over the course of the summer holidays, you have a few hours to spare this museum is well-worth a visit.

Look out for the cast of a male Tyrannosaurus rex, a life-sized model of a Coelacanth, some amazing fossil specimens, live insects and of course, arguably the OUMNH’s most famous resident – the remains of a Dodo.

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