Archaeopteryx lithographica tangles with the devil

Proof of "a threshold species between modern birds and their prehistoric dinosaur relatives" hanging out with Mephistopheles in Flight. Though don't take my use of the word "proof" too sincerely.


Archaeopteryx lithographica

(Berlin Specimen)

[Convergences #33]


Eugène Delacroix, Mephistopheles in Flight

An excerpt from R.A. Villanueva, the contributor of the images and mini-narrative to Lawrence Weschler's Convergences series:

Those who, generally speaking, follow the gospel of Darwin assign special significance to the Archaeopteryx as a liminal fossil--proof of a threshold species between modern birds and their prehistoric dinosaur relatives quite literally "set in stone." One might be surprised to note, then, that many of the websites devoted to posting images of the skeleton are not scientific but overtly anti-evolution.

It would seem that creationists have vilified the Archaeopteryx, casting it as a "hoax," a "fraud." What appears to be a feathered reptile pressed into Solnhofen limestone, they counter, is nothing more than a poorly designed "forgery" on par with the Piltdown skull, a conspiracy by scientists who would abuse authority for profit and personal gain....

Full work up: here.

More like this

Last Friday, we asked readers to identify changes in a painting by Eugène Delacroix, Christopher Columbus and His Son at La Rábida. For the test, the picture flashed maddeningly between its original state and a doctored version Greta made in Photoshop. Here's the original: We admit it -- we were…
Regular readers will know that my new book, The Great Dinosaur Discoveries (A & C Black in UK; UCP in US), was released over the last few weeks. By all accounts, it's currently selling well and the reviews that have appeared so far have all been outstandingly positive [example]. Things are…
I was able to get a few more pages out yesterday, although (say it with me now) not as many as I would have liked. I'm continuing to hammer away at the human evolution chapter as I feel that it's the most important, although if I'm not careful it could turn into a book by itself. I may hit a wall…
Photo source. Young ladies proudly displaying tattoos do not typically bring to mind a neuroscientist or a passionate advocate for science education, but that's the point. Cara Santa Maria is a science correspondent for The Huffington Post, with the slyly named blog "Talk Nerdy To Me." I…