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Alfred Sherwood Romer (December 28, 1894 - November 5, 1973) was an American paleontologist and comparative anatomist and a specialist in vertebrate evolution.


Biography

Alfred Romer was born in White Plainsmarker, New York, and studied at Amherst Collegemarker and Columbia University. Romer joined the department of geology and paleontology at the University of Chicago as an associate professor in 1923. He was an active researcher and teacher. His collecting program added important Paleozoic specimens to the Walker Museum of Paleontology. In 1934 he was appointed professor of biology at Harvard Universitymarker. In 1946, he also became director of the Harvard Museum of Comparative Zoologymarker.

Evolutionary research

Romer was very keen in investigating vertebrate evolution. Comparing facts from paleontology, comparative anatomy, and embryology, he taught the basic structural and functional changes that happened during the evolution of fishes to primitive terrestrial vertebrates and from these to all other tetrapods. He always emphasized the evolutionary significance of the relationship between the form and function of animals and the environment.

Namesake

A small genus of primitive reptiles is named Romeria after Romer, as is the term Romeriida (a cladistic term for all reptiles and birds, but excluding turtles). In July 2007 a species of pre-dinosaur or Dinosauromorpha was named Dromomeron romeri, "the first part meaning 'running femur,' the latter in honor of paleontologist Alfred Sherwood Romer, a key figure in evolution research". The finding of these fossils was hailed as a breakthrough proving dinosaurs and dinosauromorphs "lived together for as long as 15 million to 20 million years."

Books

  • Romer, A.S. 1933. Vertebrate Paleontology. University of Chicago Press, Chicago. (2nd ed. 1945; 3rd ed. 1966)
  • Romer, A.S. 1933. Man and the Vertebrates. University of Chicago Press, Chicago. (2nd ed. 1937; 3rd ed. 1941; 4th ed., retitled The Vertebrate Story, 1949)
  • Romer, A.S. 1949. The Vertebrate Body. W.B. Saunders, Philadelphia. (2nd ed. 1955; 3rd ed. 1962; 4th ed. 1970)
  • Romer, A.S. 1949. The Vertebrate Story. University of Chicago Press, Chicago. (4th ed. of Man and the Vertebrates)
  • Romer, A.S. 1956. Osteology of the Reptiles. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.
  • Romer, A.S. 1968. Notes and Comments on Vertebrate Paleontology. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.
  • Romer, A.S. & T.S. Parsons. 1977. The Vertebrate Body. 5th ed. Saunders, Philadelphia. (6th ed. 1985)


Sources



External links

  • http://www.wku.edu/~smithch/chronob/ROME1894.htm



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