The Loom

Bony Beauties

i-fb430e8198037ccf4fd3bd4c00900c1e-angler500.jpgI am a bone geek, I confess. On my bookshelves are a bunch of coffee-table books full of skulls, femurs, and xyphoid processes. They include From Lucy To Language, loaded with hominid remains, Human Bones for our current anatomy, and Fossils for a quick hit of Deep Time. An excellent addition to this sub-sub-genre is called, simply, Evolution. It’s loaded with gorgeous pictures of vertebrate skeletons (including this angler). In today’s New York Times, I have a photoessay with several other selections. You can check out a slide show here.

Update: I forgot to mention that I talk about the photoessay at the top of this week’s NY Times Science podcast.


  1. #1 Laelaps
    November 6, 2007

    And I thought that anglers were scary looking with their flesh on…

    I definitely need to get a copy of this book; thanks for sharing this Carl.

  2. #2 Martin Weiss
    November 6, 2007

    The link to the book Fossils you mention is broken. What is the full reference?


  3. #3 Carl Zimmer
    November 6, 2007

    Martin–Thanks. Links should all work now.

  4. #4 luca
    November 9, 2007

    Ah! ,a href=>Saw it some weeks ago and was planning to get it. I skimmed through the pages and the pictures are just wonderful… Didn’t know an english version was available, though… (it’s also definitely cheaper)

  5. #5 Mike from Ottawa
    November 18, 2007

    If you like bones, have you checked out the Sauropod Vertebra Picture of the Week (SVPOW!) blog at ? Very narrow, very fascinating stuff.

  6. #6 Sordes
    November 21, 2007

    Yes, skulls and skeletons can be really fascinating. Especially fish have often such complex cranial structures. When I was this year at the Museum of Natural History at Vienna I photographed some very interesting skeletons and skulls of fish, including those of a monkfish. But the other ones were also really amazing, for example the strange skeleton of a sunfish, or the bizarre skull of a halibut. I posted some photos of them some time ago at my blog:

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