Mammals from the Age of Dinosaurs

Origins, Evolution, and Structure

Zofia Kielan-Jaworowska, Richard L. Cifelli, and Zhe-Xi Luo

Columbia University Press

Mammals from the Age of Dinosaurs

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Pub Date: November 2004

ISBN: 9780231119184

700 Pages

Format: Hardcover

List Price: $200.00£148.00

Pub Date: November 2004

ISBN: 9780231509275

700 Pages

Format: E-book

List Price: $199.99£148.00

Mammals from the Age of Dinosaurs

Origins, Evolution, and Structure

Zofia Kielan-Jaworowska, Richard L. Cifelli, and Zhe-Xi Luo

Columbia University Press

The fossil record on Mesozoic mammals has expanded by orders of magnitude over the past quarter century. New specimens, some of them breathtakingly complete, have been found in nearly all parts of the globe at a rapid pace. Coupled with the application of new scientific approaches and techniques, these exciting discoveries have led to profound changes in our interpretation of early mammal history.

Mesozoic mammals have come into their own as a rich source of information for evolutionary biology. Their record of episodic, successive radiations speaks to the pace and mode of evolution. Early mammals were small, but they provide key information on the morphological transformations that led to modern mammals, including our own lineage of Placentalia. Significant and fast-evolving elements of the terrestrial biota for much of the Mesozoic, early mammals have played an increasingly important role in studies of paleoecology, faunal turnover, and historical biogeography. The record of early mammals occupies center stage for testing molecular evolutionary hypotheses on the timing and sequence of mammalian radiations.

Organized according to phylogeny, this book covers all aspects of the anatomy, paleobiology, and systematics of all early mammalian groups, in addition to the extant mammalian lineages extending back into the Mesozoic.

A greatly needed summary and updating of new knowledge about early mammalian history.... both a milestone marking current progress in our understanding of these wonderful beasts and a starting line of challenges for future research.

Jason A. Lillegraven & William A. Clemens (foreword)

Mammals from the Age of Dinosaurs provides a solid foundation for the continuing quest to shed light on the extensive Mesozoic history of mammals.

Hans Sues, Science

Only once in a decade, if then, is a milestone book such as this one published...Essential.


A fantastic book on the new collections of Mesozoic mammals.

Journal of the American Association of Forensic Dentists

This book is a triumph... An essential reference

Pam Gill, Paleontology Newsletter

I am glad to own two copies... I expect to wear out both copies long before a comparable work emerges.

Timothy Rowe, Nature

Quite interesting... every species of Mesozoic mammal currently known can be found between these covers.

Lynne M. Clos, Fossil News

A valuable synthesis of what is known about early mammals... It will undoubtedly become the classic reference on the subject.

Southeastern Naturalist

This is a volume that any self-respecting zoological or paleontological library should have on its shelves.

Douglas Palmer, Mammalian Biology
FOREWORD, by J. A. Lillegraven and W. A. Clemens
1. Introduction
2. Distribution: Mesozoic Mammals in Space and Time
3. Origin of Mammals
4. The Earliest-Known Stem Mammals
5. Docodontans
6. Australosphenida and Shotherium
7. Eutriconodontans
8. Allotherians
9. "Symmetrodontans" (Stem Trechnotherians)
10. "Eupantotherians" (Stem Cladotherians)
11. "Tribotherians" (Stem Boreosphenidans)
12. Metatherians
13. Eutherians
14. Gondwanatherians
15. Interrelationships of Mesozoic Mammals

About the Author

Zofia Kielan-Jaworowska is professor emeritus at the Institute of Paleobiology, Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw and the University of Oslo. She was the leader of the Polish-Mongolian expedition to the Gobi Desert (1963–1971) that discovered spectacular dinosaurs and mammals. She has devoted most of her scientific life to the studies of the Mesozoic mammals.

Richard L. Cifelli is curator of vertebrate paleontology at the Oklahoma Museum of Natural History and professor of zoology at the University of Oklahoma. He has led extensive field explorations of fossil vertebrates in the Mesozoic and Cenozoic of North and South Americas and studied the biogeographical and faunal evolution of early mammals.

Zhe-Xi Luo is curator of vertebrate paleontology at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh. He has actively explored fossil mammals and dinosaurs in China and in the United States and studied evolutionary morphology and phylogenetic relationships of early mammals and fossil whales.