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(Coral rag. (Wilts. Gloucestershire, &c.)

Oxford clay. (Christian Malford. Trowbridge, Wilts.)
(Cornbrash. (Wilts. Gloucestershire.)

Forest marble; Bradford clay. (Bradford, Wilts.)
Great oolite. (Bath.)

Inferior oolite. (Cheltenham.)

Fluvio-marine intercalations. (Scarborough. Stonesfield, Oxfordshire. Collyweston. Brora, Scotland.

Upper Lias. (Lyme Regis, Dorset.)

Lias marlstones.

Lower lias clays, shales, and limestones. (Gloucestershire.

(Variegated marls, red sandstones, &c. (Liverpool.)
Gypseous marls; beds of rock salt.

Fawn-coloured limestones. (Upper Bunter, and Muschelkalk,
of Germany.)


Lower red sandstones.

Magnesian limestones. (Zeichstein. Lower Bunter, Keuper-
Schiefer or Copper Schist of Mansfeld, Germany. County

of Durham.

Marl slates, and brecciated limestones.

(Coal measures. (The principal depositories of the flora of the Palæozoic epochs.)

Millstone grits.

(Mountain or carboniferous limestone. (Derbyshire.)

(Red and yellow sandstones and Quartzose conglomerates. (Devonshire. Cornwall. Herefordshire. Forfarshire, &c.) Cornstones and marls.


(Ludlow rocks and Aymestry limestone. (Herefordshire and Shropshire.)

Wenlock or Dudley limestone.


(Caradoc sandstones.

Llandeilo flags. (Caermarthenshire.)

(Slaty rocks with few traces of organic remains. (Cumberland.)

1 The separation of the strata now termed Permian from the Triassic group, with which they were formerly classed, was first proposed by Sir Roderick Murchison, and is based on the fact that the fossils hitherto discovered are entirely distinct from any that occur in the Trias and subsequent formations: it is, therefore, inferred that after the deposition of the so-called Permian strata, a complete change took place in the faunas and floras of the lands and seas, and the Trias is regarded as the dawn of a new system of organic beings.*

*The reader interested in this subject should refer to an able "Monograph on the Permian Fossils of England," by Professor William King, of Queen's College, Galway, recently published by the Paleontographical Society of London; 1850. See also Sir Charles Lyell's "Manual of Elementary Geology," 1851, p. 301.

The subdivisions of the strata are chiefly founded on the differences observable in the faunas and floras-that is to say, in the assemblages of animals and plants which, according to the present state of our knowledge, characterise the respective series of deposits. A few localities are inserted because they will be referred to hereafter. I will only remark that many of the details in the above classification must be considered as arbitrary and provisional; but "hard lines are admissible in Science, whose object is not to imitate Nature, but to interpret her works."


1 Mr. Greenough.




INTRODUCTORY.—The extensive and admirably classified Museum of Zoology, presided over by that eminent naturalist, JOHN EDWARD GRAY, Esq., through which the visitor approaches the Gallery of Organic Remains, presents a rich assemblage of the principal types of animated nature which now inhabit the earth, and forms an appropriate and instructive introduction to the suite of apartments, in which are preserved the vestiges of the extinct races of Animals and Plants, that successively tenanted our planet during the innumerable ages which intervened between the earliest dawn of organic existences, and the creation of the human race. The Gallery of Organic Remains is situated on the north side of the north wing of the Museum, extending from east to west in a suite of six rooms, nearly 400 feet in length by 36 in width. The large specimens are for the most part placed in upright cases affixed to the south wall; and as the rooms are lighted by side-windows, instead of by sky-lights as in the Zoological department, nearly half the wall space is rendered unavailable for cabinets. The complete and excellently arranged Mineralogical Collection is distributed in a series of 60 table-cases, occupying the floors of the Rooms I. to V.; the other tables contain various organic remains, as bones, shells, corals and other zoophytes, echinoderms, &c.

The arrangement of the Fossil Animals and Vegetables is still incomplete: several cases are almost empty, and the con

tents of others are but provisionally placed. This circumstance has rendered it necessary to introduce an arbitrary notation in the subjoined plans of the rooms which I have drawn up for the present work.

The classification of the Organic Remains is botanical, and zoological; but in consequence of the want of space, and the continual additions which have been made of late years to various departments, the arrangement is necessarily somewhat irregular.

The Fossil Vegetables are placed in Room I., and occupy the wall-cases: the collection commences with the Cryptogamia, which are deposited in the cases on the right hand of the entrance, and terminates with the Conifera, of which there are examples of large petrified stems in the window-recesses. The wall-surface over the upright cases is for the most part vacant and bare; and the visitor who has previously strolled through the Egyptian Saloon and Gallery, the walls of which are adorned with paintings illustrative of the archæological treasures they contain, will doubtless feel surprise and regret that a suite of rooms devoted to objects of such surpassing interest, and which especially require pictorial illustrations to render them intelligible to the uninstructed observer, and that present a variety of subjects suitable for such decorations, should be suffered to retain their present uninviting and cheerless aspect. If on the walls over the cases in which the coal-plants are placed there were figures of the trees which flourished during the carboniferous epoch,-as for example, the Lepidodendra and Sigillariæ, with their foliage, and fruits, and roots; and above others, representations of Arborescent Ferns, Palms, Conifers, Cycadeæ, &c., how greatly would the pleasure and instruction of a visit to this Gallery of "Organic Remains of a former World," be enhanced! The same observation applies to the other apartments, in each of which there are unoccupied spaces, that at a small cost might be rendered pleasing to the eye, and instructive to the mind, if restored figures of the animals whose remains are in the cabinets, or sections and sketches of the strata and localities whence they were obtained, were painted or suspended on the walls.'

1 This method was adopted in the Author's Museum at Brighton, and proved highly attractive and useful

In Room II. commences the Fossil Fauna; but the assemblage of relics of various classes and orders, provisionally deposited in the cases, forbids a general description. The unique and highly interesting collection of the Fossil Remains of Birds from New Zealand, is the most important feature of this apartment.

Rooms III. and IV. are chiefly appropriated to the Fossil Reptiles. This is indeed a noble collection, unrivalled for its extent and importance: most of the specimens are from various parts of England, and many of them are unique.

The collection of Fossil Fishes constitutes the grand feature of Room V. It is very extensive, and is admirably arranged and named, according to the nomenclature of M. Agassiz. A fine skeleton of the extinct gigantic Elk of Ireland forms a conspicuous object in the centre of this


Room VI. The coup d'œil of this part of the Gallery, which is chiefly devoted to Fossil Mammalia, is very imposing. Immediately opposite the entrance is the model of the skeleton of the Megatherium, or colossal Sloth of South America, from Buenos Ayres; and beyond it, the skeleton of the Mastodon of the Ohio, from North America; between them is placed a most extraordinary specimen,-the skull and tusks, (fourteen feet long,) of the Elephas Ganesa, from India.

In the wall-cases is an unrivalled series of the crania and jaws and teeth of Mastodons and Elephants of numerous species, in a marvellous state of preservation. They have been cleared from the very compact incrustation which originally surrounded them, with great skill and labour by Mr. Dew. The greater number are from the Sewalik or Sub-Himalayan Mountains of India, and were collected by Major Cautley and Dr. Falconer. Some very fine specimens of the Mastodon Ohioticus are from Big-bone Lick, in Kentucky, United States of North America.

This room also contains many choice examples of the crania, teeth, and bones of the Megatherium, Dinotherium, Sivatherium, and other extinct genera of Mammalia; and the celebrated Fossil Human Skeleton in limestone, from Guadaloupe.

With these cursory observations, I would introduce the reader to Room I., requesting him to notice on the lobby, to

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