Article: A new anthracosaur amphibian from the Carboniferous of Scotland
T. R. Smithson
The anthracosaur amphibian Proterogyrinus pancheni, sp. nov., from localities in the Namurian of the Scottish Carboniferous, is the earliest known member of the Embolomeri to be described from Europe. It closely resembles the North American form P. scheelei, but is distinguished by differences in morphology of the dentition and vertebrae. Functional explanations for the presence of the large Meckelian fenestrae in the embolomere mandible are reconsidered, but it is suggested that they had no specific function and represent incomplete ossification of the mesial surface of the lower jaw. Recent discussions of anthracosaur systematics are reviewed. The newly proposed schemes are supported by very few synapomorphies and it is concluded that a solution to the problem of anthracosaur phylogeny will be found only within the framework of a larger study of the interrelationships of early tetrapods.