Smithsonian Books

Smithsonian Books

A History of Life in 100 Fossils


A History of Life in 100 Fossils showcases 100 key fossils that together illustrate the evolution of life on earth. Iconic specimens have been selected from the renowned collections of the two premier natural history museums in the world, the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, and the Natural History Museum, London. The fossils have been chosen not only for their importance in the history of life, but also because of the visual story they tell. This stunning book is perfect for all readers because its clear explanations and beautiful photographs illuminate the significance of these amazing pieces, including 500 million-year-old Burgess Shale fossils that provide a window into early animal life in the sea, insects encapsulated by amber, the first fossil bird Archaeopteryx, and the remains of our own ancestors.

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Paul D. Taylor and Aaron O`Dea

PAUL D. TAYLOR has worked in the Department of Paleontology at the Natural History Museum, London, for 30 years, heading the Invertebrate and Plants division between 1990 and 2003. His research focuses on fossil and living bryozoans, with subsidiary interests in evolution, paleoecology, and fossil folklore. He is the author of Fossil Invertebrates. AARON O`DEA is an Associate Staff Scientist at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama. He uses the fossil record to understand past climactic changes in the seas and their role in extinction and speciation, and how life in the past can help us predict the future.

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