Nummulite

Nummulites
Temporal range: Middle Cretaceous to Present day (85.8Ma-0.0Ma)
Scientific classification
Domain:
(unranked):
(unranked):
Phylum:
Subphylum:
Order:
Superfamily:
Nummulitacea
Family:
Nummulitidae
Genus:
Nummulites

Lamarck, 1801
Species

Numerous

Fossil nummulitid foraminiferans showing microspheric and megalospheric individuals; Eocene of the United Arab Emirates; scale in mm.
Fossil nummulites in Urbasa, Navarre

A nummulite is a large lenticular fossil, characterized by its numerous coils,[1] subdivided by septa into chambers. They are the shells of the fossil and present-day marine protozoan Nummulites, a type of foraminiferan. Nummulites commonly vary in diameter from 1.3 cm (0.5 inches) to 5 cm (2 inches)[2] and are common in Eocene to Miocene marine rocks, particularly around southwest Asia and the Mediterranean (e.g. Eocene limestones from Egypt). Fossils up to six inches wide are found in the Middle Eocene rocks of Turkey.[3] They are valuable as index fossils.

NummuliteLyd.jpg

The ancient Egyptians used nummulite shells as coins and the pyramids were constructed using limestone that contained nummulites.[4][5] It is not surprising then that the name "Nummulites" is a diminutive form of the Latin nummulus meaning "little coin", a reference to their shape.[6]

In 1913, naturalist Randolph Kirkpatrick published a book, The Nummulosphere: an account of the Organic Origin of so-called Igneous Rocks and Abyssal Red Clays, proposing the unconventional theory that all rocks had been produced through the accumulation of forams such as Nummulites.

References

  1. ^ 'Nummulite', Tiscali Dictionary of Animals, retrieved 17 August 2004
  2. ^ Isquirth, Irwin Richard (2011). In The World Book Encyclopedia. print.
  3. ^ 'Biggest Microbes', Guinness World Records 2001, p. 153.
  4. ^ Kaplan, Sarah, Brilliance without a brain, Speaking of Science, The Washington Post, March 7, 2018
  5. ^ Isquirth, Irwin Richard (2011). In The World Book Encyclopedia. print.
  6. ^ Hottinger, Lukas. "Illustrated glossary of terms used in foraminiferal research". Paleopolis. Retrieved 2018-11-11.
Other Languages
العربية: نيموليت
aragonés: Nummulites
català: Nummulit
Deutsch: Linsenstein
español: Nummulites
Esperanto: Numulito
euskara: Nummulites
galego: Numulita
italiano: Nummulites
magyar: Nummulites
polski: Nummulites
română: Numulit
русский: Нуммулиты
українська: Нумуліти