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British Polacanthid Dinosaurs

British Polacanthid Dinosaurs

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by William T. Blows

Siri Scientific Press (2015) 978-0-9929979-4-6 (Monograph Series Volume 7) RRP £59.99

224 pages 240 x 165 mm, hard cover, 194 colour illustrations, mainly multi-part photographs

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Reviews
PalAss. Newsl. (2017, abridged). The bulk of the monograph, chapters 3 to 7, are a description of the skeleton as preserved in individual specimens in museum collections. These chapters are richly illustrated with photographs, mostly in colour, of the bones and teeth, and are the primary reason to get hold of the book: it’s an invaluable identification guide.  The figures are clear and set against a white background, often with multiple views of individual bones. ... this monograph adds substantially to the recent literature on British dinosaurs as it fills in the gaps left by other works. It ticks the boxes for the dinosaur enthusiast, with a smattering of history and anecdotes and plenty of bones. I believe this monograph to be the life’s work of the author; it reveals a man’s passion for an enigmatic dinosaur group and the result is an essential part of the library of anyone who shares the love of dinosaurs.

Everything Dinosaur blog (2015) Dr. Blows takes the reader on a journey of exploration starting with a thoughtfully written general overview of the armoured dinosaurs and where the polacanthids fit in to the dinosaur family tree, before moving on to provide a history of armoured dinosaur discoveries from England. ... From the very first page through to the comprehensive reference and index section, this book has obviously been a labour of love. Dr. Blows imparts a tremendous amount of information, but his writing style enables the general reader to follow and to appreciate the significance of the points being made. ... Nearly 200 tables, diagrams and beautiful full colour pictures in the book. ... All in all this is an excellent book, ideal as a gift for the anyone with an interest in fossils, especially those from the British Isles. Highly recommended.

Paleoillustrata blog (2015 - summary paragraph) If you’re interested in ankylosaurs at all then it’s worth buying this book; if you're interested in or work with Early Cretaceous ankylosaurs it's essential. In years to come I can see this book being a very useful resource for workers and other interested parties alike; hopefully in future editions we will see more specimens as they come to light and are made available. It is a good review of the field as it stands from an author with decades of experience of studying British ankylosaurs and the images are superb, the specimen descriptions are detailed and the history of ankylosaur research is a great read.

From the back cover
130 million years ago, armoured dinosaurs roamed what is now southern England, parts of Europe and the USA. These were the Polacanthidae, and today their remains are becoming better known and understood. This book records the history of armoured dinosaur discoveries in the United Kingdom, from Mantell, Owen and Fox to the present day. It also reviews the important fossil remains that are housed in the UK national and private collections; remains that include some of the best preserved and most interesting armour ever found of these animals. The polacanthid taxa recovered from Lower Cretaceous rocks of Europe and the USA are also discussed, along with a new taxonomic (genus) name for the Horsham specimen.

ADDENDA
Figure 6.2. The legend does not match the figure labels. For the existing figure the legend should read:
 
Figure 6.2 NHMUK R175: Polacanthus foxii holotype hind limb bones. A. B. Right femur. A. Anterior view. B. posterior view. C. H. Left femur. C. Posterior view. H. Anterior view. D-G. Left tibia. D. Posterior view. E. Anterior view. F. Proximal end view. G. Distal end view.
Scale bar for A-E and H = 40mm, for F-G = 30mm.
 
But to correct the problem is easy. Book owners just need to change the letters on the figure 6.2 as follows:
D to E
E to F
F to G
G to H
H to D

This will make the figure fit the legend.
 
Figure 7.12 has a discrepancy between the number on the figure for the spine section, which is NHMUK 3872, but in the legend below it is NHMUK 3782. They should both read as NHMUK 3782.


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