|SECOND GEOLOGICAL SURVEY OF PENNSYLVANIA - REPORT OF PROGRESS
P. DESCRIPTION OF THE COAL FLORA OF PENNSYLVANIA
AND OF THE
CARBONIFEROUS FORMATION THROUGHOUT THE UNITED STATES
BY LEO LESQUEREUX; ©1879
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Scans and Webpage
©George Langford III, 2011
|LESCUROPTERIS||Alethopteris Owenii||Alethopteris inflata||Alethopteris Lonchitidis||Alethopteris aquilina, Lesqx.|
|LESCUROPTERIS MOORII||CALLIPTERIDIUM INAEQUALE||ALETHOPTERIS||Alethopteris distans||ALETHOPTERIS GIBSONI|
|Neuroptertis Moorii||CALLIPTERIDIUM PARDEEI||ALETHOPTERIS SERLII||Alethopteris Lonchitica||ALETHOPTERIS BUNBURYI|
|LESCUROPTERIS ADIANTITES||CALLIPTERIDIUM RUGOSUM||Pecopteris Serlii||ALETHOPTERIS GRANDIFOLIA||ALETHOPTERIS FALCATA|
|Neuropteris adiantites||Alethopteris rugosa||Alethopteris Serlii||ALETHOPTERIS HELENAE||ALETHOPTERIS MARGINATA|
|CALLIPTERIDIUM||Alethopteris obscura||ALETHOPTERIS LONCHITICA||Alethopteris Helenae||Pecopteris marginata|
|CALLIPTERIDIUM SULLIVANTII||CALLIPTERIDIUM ALDRICHI||Filicites lonchitica||ALETHOPTERIS PENNSYLVANICA||Alethopteris marginata, Goepp.|
|Callipteris Sullivantii||CALLIPTERIDIUM MEMBRANACEUM||Pecopteris lonchitica||ALETHOPTERIS AQUILINA||ALETHOPTERIS ? MAXIMA|
|Alethopteris Sullivantii||CALLIPTERIDIUM MASSILIONEUM||Pecopteris urophylla||Filicites aquilinus||PROTOBLECHNUM|
|CALLIPTERIDIUM MANSFIELDI||Alethopteris Massilionea, Lesqx.||Pecopteris Davreuxii||Pecopteris aquilina||PROTOBLECHNUM HOLDENI|
|CALLIPTERIDIUM NEUROPTEROIDES||Alethopteris Massilionea, Schp.||Alethopteris Lonchitidis et vulgatior||Alethopteris aquilina, Schp.||Alethopteris Holdeni|
|CALLIPTERIDIUM OWENII||CALLIPTERIDIUM INFLATUM||Alethopteris Sternbergii||ALETHOPTERIS AMBIGUA|
Fronds large, bi, tripinnate; rachis broad, foliate; pinnae pinnatifid, close, oblique; divisions ovate, acute, inclined outside, connate to the middle, decurrent to the rachis; primary nerve thin, dichotomous; lower pairs of lateral veins emerging from the rachis, the other alternately from the midrib, forking twice, the upper forking once or simple.
This genus, related to Odontopteris by the mode of attachment of the lateral veins, and to Neuropteris by their direction is, according to Schimper's remarks, distinguished at first sight from all the Ferns of the Carboniferous by its peculiar nervation. He compares the species on which the genus is established to Odontopteris alpina, and says that, from the distribution of the veins, it might be referred to the same division.
LESCUROPTERIS MOORII, Schp., Plate XXVI, Fig. 1, la.
Neuropteris Moorii, Lesqx., Boston Journ., S. N. H., v. VI, p. 419.
Geol. of Penn'a, 1858, p. 860, Plate XIX, f. 1.
The specific characters are those of the genus.
The thick rachis, obscurely striate, is winged by the interposition of half round leaflets between the base of the sessile decurrent pinnae, joined to the rachis by the enlarged base of the lower pinnules, or by small, irregular subdivisions. The pinnae, in an open angle of divergence, are long, ten to twelve centimeters, nearly one and a half centimeters broad in the middle, a little narrower near the base, also gradually narrowing to a terminal oval, very small leaflet, scarcely two millimeters long, and half as broad. The broad secondary rachis, two millimeters at its base, is still half as thick near the top of the pinnae. The scythe-shaped acute pinnules resemble those of Odontopteris Brardii; they are, however, shorter, with a less acuminate apex. As in the last species, they are also sometimes obtuse. The epidermis, of a reddish color, becomes transparent when humected, and the veins, then more distinct, look as if traced in black. This character, which shows the membraneous texture of the pinnules, the alate radius and the venation indicate close relation of this plant to Callipteridium.
Habitat—The locality indicated in the Geol. of Penn'a, l.c., was not precise. Mr. W. D. Moore, of Pittsburgh, to whom I owe the specimen, had received it without label. He believed that it had been obtained from a bed of clay overlying the Pittsburgh coal, at Irwin station, Pa. I saw later a few fragmentary specimens, also without labels, in the cabinet of Prof. E. B. Andrews. Some months ago I received, from Mr. T. W. Emerson, another specimen of the same size and character as the one figured, obtained in the roof shale of the coal of St. Clairsville, Belmount county, Ohio, which is considered as the equivalent of the Pittsburgh coal.
LESCUROPTERIS ADIANTITES, Lesqx., Plate XXVI, Fig. 4.
Neuropteris adiantites, Lesqx., Boston Journ., S. N. H., v. VI, p. 419.
Geol. of Penn'a,1858, p. 860, Plate XX , f. 1.
Frond bipinnate; primary pinnae deltoid in outline; secondary divisions linear-lanceolate, obtuse; pinnules or lobes connate to the middle, becoming confluent upwards in passing into an oblong obtuse terminal leaflet; midrib thin; veins oblique, forking near the borders; rachis alate.
Nothing is known of this Fern but the fragment figured. The species is distinctly related to Lescuropteris Moorii by the decurring lower pinnules, which become attached to the main radius; but differs by the very narrow rachis of the pinnae, by the downwaid inclination of the midrib and of the lateral veins, forking merely once. Except the narrow rachis the affinity of the characters even in the nervation is close, as the lower lateral veins, sometimes at least are derived from the main radius and the difference in the forking of the veins is, accountable to the small size of the half round very obtuse and oblique pinnules. The texture of the leaflets is membranaceous, like that of Lescuropteris Moorii, but thinner; the venation is distinct through the epidermis, when the surface is humected.
Habitat—South Salem vein, Pottsville. The geological horizon of this station is probably equivalent to that of the former species.
Fronds large, polypinnate; pinnules attached to the rachis by the whole base, often decurrent and the lower descending to the main rachis, connate or disjointed at the base; primary nerve strong, dissolved below the apex; lateral veins oblique, curved 'in passing to the borders, dichotomous, the basilar attached to the rachis.
Limited as it is here, this genus admits species which, formerly referred to Alethopteris, have by curved dichotomous veins a relation to Neuropteris, as they have it at the same time to Odontopteris and to Alethopteris by the attachment of the pinnules by the whole base and by the connection of the basilar veins to the rachis. I refer to Alethopteris the species only with lateral veins nearly in right angle, at least toward the base, merely forking or simple, though distinctly related they may be, by the characters of their fronds, by their shape, and by the position and size of the leaflets to Callipteridium.
Prof. Weiss unites into this Genus: Callipteris Sullivantii, Lesqx.; Neuropteris ovata, Germ.; Neuropteris pteroides, Goep.; Odontopteris connata, Roem.; Neuropteris regina, Roem., and Pecopteris gigas, Gutb. Of these species, Neuropteris ovata is now placed by Weiss in Neuropteridium a section of the Neuropteris, proposed by Schimper, which Weiss admits as a new genus; Odontopteris connata, Roem., is referable to Callipteris by its nervation; the other species belonging to the Permian or New Red, have the characters of Caltipteridium as fixed above.
CALLIPTERIDIUM SULLIVANTII, Lesqx.
Callipteris Sullivantii, Lesqx., Boston Journ. N. H. S., v. VI, p. 423.
Geol. of Penn'a, 1858, p. 866, Plate V, f. 13.
Geol. Rept. of Ill., p. 440, Pl. XXXVIII, f. 1.
Alethopteris Sullivantii, Schp., Paleont. Veget., p. 561.
Fronds bi- or tri-pinnate; pinnae large, linear-lanceotate; leaflets lingulate, enlarged above the middle, very obtuse, lateral veins close, thin, curved, dichotomous.
Both figures of this species represent simple pinnae; that of the Rept. of Ill., l.c., is twenty centimeters long, five centimeters broad in the middle, a little narrower at the base and tapering near the top to a small oval terminal pinnule entered up to the middle by the top of the rachis. The lateral pinnules averaging two and a half centimeters, one centimeter broad in the middle, are narrowed to the point of connection near the rachis, where they are joined in narrow obtuse sinuses. The midrib is two millimeters thick at the base, still half as thick at the point where it is dissolved, a little above the middle. The lateral veins numerous, in an acute angle of divergence from the rachis, gradually curve towards the borders, having exactly the neuropterid character.
I have seen of this species the upper part of a compound pinna with three pairs of alternate close secondary pinnae, the lower one two centimeters long, with short, obtuse or half round broad pinnules or lobes, eight millimeters long and as broad, joined half their length. The medial nerve is distinct in each leaflet, and has with the lateral veins also the same character as in the other fragments described. The second pair of these pinnae, in ascending, pass to deeply undulate pinnules, about four centimeters long, with the rachis for its midrib, all the lateral veins emerging from it; in the third, the pinnae are entire, linear-lanceolate obtuse pinnules, not even undulate on the borders. This division is normal, the same as that of the upper part of the pinnae of the Alethopterids. The substance of the leaflets is thick, coriaceous.
Habitat—Lower coal bed of Shamokin, Penn' a, just above the Conglomerate. Roof shale of Colchester and Morris coal; nodules of Mazon Creek, Ill.—Dr. J. H. Britts has sent specimens of it in nodules of Carbonate of Iron, from near Clinton, Mo. Also found at Cannelton, Pa., with the the following.
CALLIPTERIDIUM MANSFIELDI, Sp. nov., Plate XXVII, Figs. 1-3.
Fronds bipinnate; primary pinnae lanceolate, the lower part bipinnatifid, simply pinnate at the top; secondary pinnae mostly large, lanceolate; pinnules connate at the base, oblong, obtuse; midrib comparatively narrow, effaced below the apex; lateral veins oblique curved, dichotomous.
Considering merely the shape of the pinnules of the large pinna Plate XXVII, f. 1, the species seem closely allied to the former. It is however far different, the leaflets being gradually attenuated to an obtuse point, not enlarged above the middle and not as rounded at the top, curved upwards, rather than backwards, and the pinnae lanceolate. The substance also is not coriaceous, but rather thin; the primary nerves narrower, not abruptly dissolved; the secondary veins more distinct thicker and not as crowded. The upper part of the pinna Plate XXVII, f. 2, though of the same general character has its divisions much narrower, and more distant. The lower pinnules at the base of the pinna are attached to the rachis as in Callipteridium Pardeei. From this, it may be inferred that the rachis may have been partly winged by decurrent leaflets as in the fragment of the last named species, Atl., Plate XXVI, f. 3.
Habitat--Cannelton; Mr. I. F. Mansfield. Though not very rare, all the specimens obtained until now are small fragments.
CALLIPTERIDIUM NEUROPTEROIDES, Sp. nov., Plate XXVII, Figs. 3, 3a.
Pinner large, lanceolate; upper pinnules connate at the base, the lower disjoined, sessile by the whole base, oblong, obtuse; midrib thick, dissolved above the middle; lateral veins thick, at an acute angle of divergence, slightly curved towards the borders, dichotomous.
The substance of this Fern, of which I have seen only the fragment figured, is thick, coriaceous. The upper pinnules joined at the base, are open, the lower ones disconnected, even distant, nearly in right angle to the rachis, sessile by their whole base, the borders being only a little rounded to the point of attachment. The size of the pinnules and apparently of the whole plant is about the same as in the two former species. This is the only point of analogy; for besides their thick coriaceous epidermis, the pinnules of this species have a very distinct nervation, the midrib being merely prominent from the base to the middle where it is effaced, and the lateral veins very oblique scarcely curved and very thick. The upper part of Plate XXVII, f. 3, enlarged 3a, shows the veins thin under the destroyed epidermis.
Habitat—Nodules of Mazon Creek, very rare. Among the thousands of specimens which I have seen from the locality, this is the only fragment ever discovered of this species.
CALLIPTERIDIUM OWENII, Lesqx., Plate XXXIII, Figs. 6-7.
Alethopteris Owenii, Lesqx., Geol. Rept. of Arks., II, p. 309, Pl. II, f. 1.
Schp. Paleont. veget.,I, p. 556.
Frond tripinnate; pinnae large, in right angle to the broad rachis, distant; pinnules lanceotate, obtuse, rarety acute, connatc near the rachis in obtuse sinuses, often decurring ; borders undulate; medial nerve distinct to above the middte; veins dichotomous, distant, thin and curved.
The specimen figured represent the different characters of the pinnae and pinnules of this species. According to their position in the upper or lower part of the fronds, the pinnae are broader or narrower; the pinnules also, are of various length, and differently joined at the base; but the essential characters are preserved in all. The pinnae and pinnules are at right angle; the midrib always distinct, sometimes marked to the apex; the veins, oblique at first, more curved in reaching the borders, generally forking twice, are thin, and undulate. The separate leaflet at the right corner of the specimen seems, by its form, especially the acute apex, the thick costa, and the lateral veins merely forked, of a different character, and is, perhaps, referable to another species, though upon the same piece of shale. I found, among a lot of specimens received from Mr. W. Gurley, a large pinna with short obtuse pinnules, comparable by their form to Callipteridium Sullivantii, but with the nervation of this species, the veins forking once near the base, and both branches once more near the borders; the midrib flat and broad on the lower surface, but thin and more prolonged on the upper side. The ultimate pinnule is short, triangular, obtuse. I refer the specimen to this species as a variety.
The general facies of this Fern is that of an Alethopteris. As all the veins, except the basilar ones, are generally forking twice and curved, its place is with Callipteridium. Schimper remarks of this species that it resembles Alethopteris taeniopteroides, Bunb' y. But this last plant, as far as I know it, has none of the basilar veins attached to the rachis, and is, therefore, a Pecopteris, as seen also by its fructifications.
Habitat—Male's coal and Lee's creek coal, subconglomerate, Arks. Mr. Gurley's specimens are labeled Spring Creek, Ind.
CALLIPTERIDIUM INAEQUALE, Sp. nov., Plate XXXIII, Figs. 2-5.
Pinnae large, linear, lanceolate near the apex to a small obtuse terminal leaftet; pinnules irregular in size and position, linear, obtuse, connate near the base, and oblique; or open, more or less distant, subspathulate, rounded to the point of attachment; medial nerve thick, abruptly dissolved below the apex; lateral veins thin, numerous, hidden into the thick epidermis, diverging in acute angle, forking once or twice, and moderately curved.
The pinnules are irregular in size, sometimes shorter in the middle of the pinnae, and as seen by the fragment Plate XXXIII, f. 5, also very irregular in their position. Their size is equally variable, one to two centimeters long in the middle of the pinnae, five to seven millimeters broad. The substance of the plant is coriaceous. By this character and the broad middle nerve abruptly dissolved, it is related to Callipteridium Sullivantii and Callipteridium neuropteroides; but the midrib ascends higher, the surface of the leaflets is rough, and the veins, though quite as close, are a little stronger and less divided, generally immersed, rarely clear and distinct. The pinnules in the fragment Plate XXXIII, f. 5, narrowed and rounded to the point of attachment, are remarkably like those of a Neuropteris.
Habitat—Cannelton, Pa.; found only in fragments.
CALLIPTERIDIUM PARDEEI, Sp. nov., Plate XXVI, Fig. 2, 3.
Frond bi, tripinnatifid; primary pinnae triangular, rapidly narrowed and delloid to the apex; secondary divisions alternate or subopposite, open, the lower ones long, linear, lanceolate near the apex, the upper ones simpte, undulate, or entire, oblong, obtuse; medial nerve distinct to near the apex; veins in acute angle of divergence, stightly curved, generally twice forked.
In the two fragments, Plate XXVI, f. 2 and 3, preserved upon the same specimen, on opposite side, the pinnae are all sessile upon the main rachis, attached to it by the lower pinnules, either distinct, oval; or decurring along it, and triangular obtuse, the rachis becoming then distinctly winged. The lower secondary pinnae averaging eight to ten centimeters long, are linear, only narrowed near the apex in passing by connate leaflets to very small obtuse terminal ones; their lateral pinnules, six to seven millimeters long, four millimeters broad, slightly oblique, connate above the base, are oblong, very obtuse and entire. The rachis is narrow; the midrib not very thick, is distinct, effaced by divisions below the apex; the veins in very acute angle, thin, very distinct, are more distant than in any of the former species, and also somewhat less curved in passing towards the borders. As in the Alethopterids, the upper part of the primary pinnae is merely pinnate, the simple divisions or pinnules becoming gradually and rapidly shorter toward the top. It is distantly related to Callipteridium Mansfieldi.
Habitat—I found the specimen, without label, in the museum of the Pardee school of mines, Lafayette College, Easton, Penn'a. From the substance of the stone, it is derived from the Anthracite basin.
CALLIPTERIDIUM RUGOSUM, Lesqx., Plate XXXVI, Figs. 1, 2.
Alethopteris rugosa, Lesqx., Cat. Potts. Ass., p. 11, Pl. f. 2.
Schp., Paleont. Veget., I, p. 562.
Alethopteris obscura, Lesqx., Boston Journ., S. N. H., v. VI, p. 422.
Geol. of Penn'a, 1858, p. 865, Plate I, f. 13-14a.
Frond tripinnatifid; pinnae oblong rapidly narrowed in the upper part; secondary divisions slightly oblique, allernate, sessile, sub-linear, pinnately, equally and deepty lobed; medial nerve as thin as the veins which are oblique, curved to the borders, distant, forked once or twice.
The first specimens found of this species and described as Alethopteris obscura, 1.c., had merely fragments of lower pinnae, like Plate XXXVI, f. 2, with distant lanceolate obtusely acuminate pinnules, more or less regularly pinnately undulate. A better specimen representing the upper part of a pinna, was figured later as Alethopteris rugosa, l.c., differing from the first by the short connate acute leaflets, with a coarse rugose surface. The large specimen, Atlas, Plate XXXVI, f. 1, was discovered still later, with other fragments at the same locality. It evidently represents both forms described under two different names. The primary pinnae are large; seventeen centimeters long or more, with a round irregularly striate rachis; the lateral branches, four to eight centimeters long, shorter toward the base, and also toward the apex, are regularly deeply lobate in alternate, oblong, obtuse or obovate pinnules, connate to the middle, inclined upwards, the lower ones, on the inferior side, being attached either to the main or to the secondary rachis or between both, cuneate or half round, rather smaller than the others. Those of the upper pairs become confluent to the base of the terminal, lanceolate, obtuse leaflets. The surface of the pinnules being generally wrinkled across, sometimes in the direction of the veins, and always rough, the very thin veins are seen with some difficulty, except the basilar ones which are derived from the rachis. They are attached to a thin flexuous midrib, in a very acute angle of divergence, distant, curving toward the borders, forking once near the base, and generally one of the branches, sometimes both, forking again near the borders. Plate XXXVI, f. 1b, copied from that of Alethopteris rugosa, l.c., and Plate XXXVI, f. 2, are not quite exact. The middle nerve is sometimes decurring but not always and not as much as seen upon the figures, the lower pairs of veins, on both sides, being generally derived from the radius.
The species is related by its nervation to Lescuropteris Moorii, and by the subdivision of its pinnae to Pseudopecopteris anceps. The thin very oblique curved veins, the sessile pinnae with the lower pinnules sometimes free and attached to the main rachis, refer the plant to Callipteridium.
A specimen recently seen in the cabinet of Mr. Lacoe has the primary pinnae seventeen centimeters long, eight centimeters broad at the base, with both primary and secondary rachis somewhat flexuous in the upper part.
Habitat—Gate and Salem Veins, near Pottsville, upper coal; also found at Oliphant, vein No. 1, and at Wilkesbarre, Oakwood Colliery F ?
CALLIPTERIDIUM ALDRICHI, Sp. nov., Plate XXXIX, Figs. 1-3.
Frond large, tripinnate; primary divisions lanceolate, slightly broader in the middle, attached in right angle to a broad, regularly narrowly striate rachis; secondary pinnae linear-lanceolate, in right angle, stightly curved upwards, alternate and sessile, the lower bipinnatifid at the base, simply pinnate in the upper part, entirc and merely lobed near the apex under the obtong-obtuse terminal leaflets; medial nerve thick, dissolved and divided above the middle; veins oblique, curved to the borders, forking once; pinnules coriaceous, convex on the upper surface.
I have had for examination a large number of specimens, all from the same locality, but mostly small fragments. The largest one shows part of a primary or perhaps secondary rachis, five to six millimeters thick, with three pinnae in right angle, one of which, with a fragment of the rachis, is represented Plate XXXIX, f. 1. As it is generally the case in species of Alethopteris and Callipteridium, the lower pinnae are pinnately divided, even bipinnatifid towards the base, the pinnules separated even distant; while the middle ones become connate at the base, and gradually more and more connivent, passing at the apex to simple, undulate, long, terminal pinnules. The lower pinnules, in right angle to the rachis, are rounded at the base to the point of attachment, pinnately obtusely lobed; the others are smaller, all entire, linear or oblong, obtuse. The substance of the leaflets is thick, coriaceous, and by this appearance, the species has somewhat the aspect of Pseudopecopteris nervosa. But the shape of the pinnules and the venation are very different. All the veins in acute angle of divergence from the midrib curve towards the borders, and are merely forked once; all also are derived from the midrib, except the basilar ones, which, as seen Plate XXXIX, f. la and 1b, come off from the rachis. The shape of the leaflets and their relative position is variable. Plate XXXIX, f. 2 represents a fragment with short, ovate, very obtuse pinnules, all disconnected and distant, the borders irregularly undulately lobed, a mere modification of the form of the lower pinnules of Plate XXXIX, f. 1. Plate XXXIX, f. 3 is a fragment with smaller, separate, oval leaflets, more distant in the upper part, confluent only under the terminal pinnule, and united with it, like those near the apex of the lateral branches of Plate XXXIX, f. 1. This species is comparable to Callipteridium inaequale. The shape of the leaflets, the thick lateral veins from a narrower midrib, etc., are the more striking differences.
Habitat—Intra conglomerate measures, of Alabama, shale of the Black Creek seam, Jefferson coal mines. Mr. T. H. Aldrich.
CALLIPTERIDIUM MEMBRANACEUM, Sp. nov., Plate XXVII; Figs. 4-8.
Frond polypinnate; secondary divisions linear-lanceolate, either simply pinnate, with the lower pinnules oblong, obtuse, free and undulate, the upper ones gradually shorter, more connate, passing to a short, obtong, obtuse terminal leaftet, or bipinnatifid, with short, linear, deeply pinnately lobed divisions; medial nerve thick, vanishing below the apex; veins oblique, forking once or twice, moderatety curved.
The substance of the leaves of this plant is membranaceous; their surface is smooth, and at first sight without any trace of venation. When wetted, however, the epidermis becomes transparent, and the veins quite distinct through its yellowish color. The plant presents, in the characters of its pinnae and pinnules, the same variety of size, shape and subdivisions as species of Alethopteris. The venation is also variable according to the position of the pinnules. In Plate XXVII, f. 5, the pinnules are entire, connate in the upper part of the pinna, disjointed towards its base, with borders rounded to the point of attachment. The same character is seen in Plate XXVII, f. 4, whose leaflets are however distinctly and regularly undulate, indicating the separate divisions remarked in Plate XXVII, f. 6-8. The veins in Plate XXVII, f. 6, enlarged 6a, have the normal character; in Plate XXVII, f. 7, they merely fork once; in Plate XXVII, f. 8, they are simple or forked, and the lower ones are distinctly turned upwards, a division dimly marked already upon the upper pinnules of Plate XXVII, f. 7a enlarged. It is thus possible to follow the gradual mutations of forms and of venation. This, without taking into account the peculiar character of the epidermis, would already indicate the reference of all these fragments to a same species. All the pinnules, though their size may be, either connate at the base or free, have the basilar veins derived from the rachis. The terminal pinnules are small, round or cuneate to the base. The rachis is apparently large; the fragment Plate XXVII, f. 4 shows it distinctly striate, either upon the bark or under it.
Habitat—Clinton Coal, Mo. Communicated in numerous specimens by Dr. J. H. Britts.
CALLIPTERIDIUM MASSILIONEUM, Lesqx.
Alethopteris Massilionis, Lesqx., Geol. Rept. of Ill., II, p. 438, Pl. XL, f. 1-4.
Alethopteris Massilionea, Schp., Paleont. Veget., I, p. 561.
Frond tripinnate; primary rachis thick, irregularly striate; primary pinnae in right angle, broadly lanceolate; lower secondary pinnae alternate, open, curved upwards, sessile upon the naked rachis, the upper ones decurring at the base and bordering the rachis by a linear margin; pinnules connate near their base, oblong, undulate, obtuse, slightly undulate; midrib thick, dissolved below the apex; secondary veins dichotomous, forking twice, strongly curved, the branches reaching the borders in right angle.
In this fine species the secondary rachis is winged by the decurring basilar leaflets of the upper pinnae. The margin is generally linear, but sometimes it enlarges, in the intervals between the pinnae, into angular pinnules, shorter however and less distinct than those of Callipteridium Pardeei, Atl., Plate XXVI, f. 3. The secondary pinnae of various length, according to their position, are nearly linear, or very gradually narrower to the acuminate terminal pinnules one to one and a half centimeters long. The lateral leaflets have the same form as those of Callipteridium Owenii, but are smaller.
Though the facies of this Fern is that of Alethopteris the veins, very curved backwards, dichotomous or forking twice, and the winged rachis, mark its place with Callipteridium. Schimper remarks that it is intermediate between Alethopteris Dournaisii and Alethopteris Grandini, both species of Brongniart, from which it differs by the pinnules connate, in an acute angle near the base, as they are in Alethopteris aquilina. Its relation seems still more marked with Neuropteris ovata, Germ., a species referred to Pecopteris by Brongniart, to Alethopteris by Goeppert, later placed by Weiss in his genus Callipteridium and now in Neuropteridium of Schimper.
Habitat—Lower coal of Massillon, Ohio. Not seen elsewhere.
|SPECIES INSUFFICIENTLY KNOWN.
CALLIPTERIDIUM INFLATUM, Lesqx.; Plate XXXIII, Figs. 9, 9a.
Alethopteris inflata, Lesqx., Geol. Rept. of Ill., IV, p. 393, Pl. X, f. 5-6.
Schp., Paleont. Veget., III, p. 500.
Frond pinnately divided; pinnae linear, narrow; pinnules in right angle, alternate, ovate, broadly obtuse, connate near the base; midrib thick, dissolved at the middle; veins much curved in passing to the borders, oncc or twice forked; sporanges large, oval, basilar, one only at each side of the costa.
A mere fragment of a pinna remarkable by its short and oval obtuse pinnules, six millimeters long, four millimeters broad, placed in right angle to a narrow rachis, each bearing at the base, on each side of the middle nerve, a large oval or round sporange, one and a half millimeter in diameter. The fructification is marked upon the upper surface of the leaflets by a distinct swelling, wrinkled around, as seen Plate XXXIII, f. 9a enlarged. The curved veins inflated, not very distinct, but seen under the glass as in Plate XXXIII, f. 9a, relate this fragment to Callipteridium, more it seems than to Alethopteris. Prof. Schimper remarks that from its peculiar fructification this Fern should represent a group without relation to the pteridoid Alethopteris. It seems however to have an analogy to the Cyatheae. Matonia pectinata, R. Br., for example, bears at the base of the midrib, and on one side only, a large round sporange which by compression and seen upon the reverse of the leaflets, would have the same appearance as those of this species. There is also an analogy in the nervation, the form, even the disposition of the pinnules, between that living Fern and this fossil species.
Habitat—Nodules of Mazon Creek.
Fronds polypinnate; pinnules coriaceous, simple, mostly entire, enlarged at the base, connate or free, with, borders reflexed; midrib distinct, immersed into the epidermis, marked by a groove on the upper surface; prominent on the lower; lateral veins simple or forking once, open, often in right angle to the rachis; fructifications marginal.
Schimper rightly remarks, on this definition, that it is not possible to fix a positive line of demarcation between Alethopteris and Pecopteris, and that we have to accept the divisions as a mere approximative grouping. The characters which I consider more permanent or distinctive of these genera is the absence of rachial veins in Pecopteris the larger size of the pinnules and the disposition of the veins more distinctly in right angle to the costa in Alethopteris. As far as known, the fructifications in this last genus are marginal, while in Pecopteris they are punctiform, in son disposed over the lamina in relation to the veins.
ALETHOPTERIS SERLII, Brgt., Plate XXIX, Figs. 1-5.
Pecopteris Serlii, Brgt., Hist. d. veg. foss., p. 292, Pl. LXXXV.
Alethopteris Serlii, Goepp., Syst., p. 301, Pl. XXI, f. 6, 7.
Lesqx., Geol. of Penn'a, 1858, p. 865.
Schp., Paleont. Veget., 1, p. 555.
Frond at least tripinnate; primary divisions lanceolate; secondary pinnae pinnately lobed, the upper ones simple; pinnules oblong or lingulate, obtuse or blunt at the apex, confluent at the base; medial nerve thick, deeply sulcate, ascending to the apex; veins. in a very open angle of divergence, nearly in right angle to the midrib, very numerous and close, simple or forking once mostly near the middle.
Though the species is common, it is generally represented in fragments of simple pinnae of the second order, like Plate XXIX, f. 1, very rarely found attached to the rachis. Of these branches some are very large, with pinnules as long as six centimeters and one and a half centimeter broad. The great difference of size in regard to the position of the pinnules is seen in comparing the figures of our plate. The primary pinnae and also those of the second order become near the apex, simple alternate pinnules as in the upper part of Plate XXIX, f. 2, or terminal leaflets as in Plate XXIX, f. 4, by the gradual connection of the pinnules. From this, the divers modifications of forms seen on the fragments, Plate XXIX, f. 3, 4, 5, and others, are easily accounted for as resulting from their relation to various parts of the fronds.
This species is very much like the following, easily distinguished however by its broader pinnules, generally enlarged in the middle, more obtuse at the apex, always and distinctly connate at the base and by closer, more numerous veins, generally forking nearer to the middle.
Habitat—Distributed mostly in the lower strata of the middle coal measures. It abounds in the nodules of Mazon Creek, Ill.; in the coal of Clinton, Mo., from which Dr. J. H. Britts procured the large specimen of Plate XXIX, f. 2, and some of the fragments of the same plate; also at Pittston and Wilkesbarre, in the Mammoth vein of the Anthracite measures. It is not rare at Cannelton. I have not seen any specimens from the sub-conglomerate coal.
ALETHOPTERIS LONCHITICA, Schloth.—Plate XXVIII, Fig. 7.
Filicites lonchitica, Schloth., Flor. d. Vorw., Pl. XI, f. 22.
Pecopteris lonchitica, Brgt., Hist. d. Veg. foss., p. 275, Pl. LXXXIV and CXXVIII.
Pecopteris urophylla, Brgt., ibid., p. 290, Pl. LXXXVI.
Pecopteris Davreuxii, Brgt., ibid., p. 279, Pl. LXXXVIII.
Alethopteris Lonchitidis et vulgatior, St., Fl. d. Vorw., p. 21, Pl. LIll, f. 2.
Alethopteris Sternbergii, Goep., Syst., p. 295.
Alethopteris Lonchitidis, Lesqx., Geol. of Penn'a, 1858, p. 864.
Alethopteris distans, Lesqx., ibid., p. 865, Pl. XII, f. 2.
Alethopteris Lonchitica, Schp., Paleont., Veget., 1, p. 554.
Frond tripinnate, bipinnate in the upper part, simply pinnate near the apex; rachis strong, smooth; pinnae open, larger in the middle, and bipinnate; secondary divisions linear-oblong, alternate, deeply pinnatifid; pinnules sessile by the whole base, oblique, linear-lanceolate or oblong, obtuse or acute, the lower ones free, the upper connate, gradually more confluent toward the apex, slightly decurring; terminal pinnules long, lanceolate; medial nerve thick, ascending to the apex; lateral veins nearly in right angle, forking once near the base, or simple, thicker, and more distant than in the former species.
This description, abridged from Schimper, gives the characters of the mode of division of the fronds of this and of most of the other species of Alethopteris. In this species, the shape, size, and mode of attachment of the leaflets are extremely variable. The pinnules are generally narrow, comparatively longer, lanceolate to the more distinctly acute apex. This, with the difference in the venation, separates it from the former. But the pinnules are so very variable that it is often difficult to decide upon the reference of small specimens, either to this or to the former congener. Besides the normal form, three distinct varieties, perhaps true species, are exposed from American specimens.
1st. Primary pinnae very long, fragments of one indicating it as nearly seventy centimeters; lower secondary divisions curved upwards from an open angle of divergence, seventeen centimeters long, with comparatively short pinnules, twelve millimeters, linear-lanceolate, obtuse, connate in acute angle near the rachis, and slightly decurring; the terminal pinnule is short, one centimeter, lanceolate, blunt at the apex; the veins are distinct, simple, or forking once from the base; the substance is coriaceous. A number of specimens of this kind come from Canelton, Penn'a.
2d. Tertiary pinnae long, with a narrow, flexuous rachis; pinnules all free, more or less distant, sessile by the whole scarcely enlarged base, lanceolate, tapering to an acute or acuminate apex, generally curved backwards; veins mostly simple and strong. This form is figured by Brgt., l.c., Pl. XXXVIII; but I do not find it described or even mentioned either by Brongniart or by Schimper. It is Alethopteris Sternbergii, l.c., figured in St., Pl. LIII, f. 2, as Alethopteris vulgatior, without mention of the character of the nervation.
A fine specimen of this variety, Al. 97, is preserved in the Museum of Comp. Zool., of Cambridge.
3d. Pinnae of large size, lanceolate; pinnules distant, very narrow, the lower ones scarcely three millimeters broad at the base, three centimeters long, enlarged and decurrent on the lower basilar side, gradually narrowed and sharply acuminate; midrib thin, effaced under the acumen; veins in right angle, thin, scarcely discernible, simple or forking once.
This remarkable variety or species is represented by numerous fragments upon a large slab in the museum of the Pardee school of Easton, Penn'a. The specimen is without label. The pinnae of this Fern are distantly comparable to Atlas, Plate XXX, f. 4. The branches are, however, twice as long, curved upwards, and gradually acuminate.
Alethopteris distans , Lesqx., l.c., is referable to this variety.
Habitat—The species, in its normal characters, is most common in the lower coal of the anthracite basin of Penn'a, the Mammouth, the Five Foot vein; also in the nodules of Mazon Creek, and the shale of the Morris coal. I found it also quite abundant in the lower coal of the Kanawha river, above Charlestown [Charleston, W.Va. ? - GL,III, ed.]. I have not seen it in the specimens from Clinton, Mo.
Frond tripinnate, very large; pinnae subopposite, the lower ones tinear-lanceolate in outline; pinnules either lingulate, enlarged above the middle, round at the apex, or linear-lanceolate, obtusely acuminate, distant and undulate, joined near the base in obtuse sinusses ; terminal pinnules narrowly lanceolate; veins figured oblique and dichotomous.
This species is scarcely different from the former, and from the numerous specimens which I have obtained at the same locality, as those described here, as also from a large number of others presented by the author to the museum of Cambridge, I have been unable to find a permanent and distinct specific character. On these specimens, the venation is the same as that of Atlas, Plate XXVIII, f. 7a, enlarged, and the pinna, Pl. XLVIII, f. 1, of the Rept. of Ohio, has its segments positively of the same character as in the variety described above, from Cannelton. In this same specimen, the upper pinnae have the leaflets obtuse, though not distinctly narrowed in the middle, as in f. 2, of this last Rept., and the rachis also is distinctly striate. It seems to be the same form as Alethopteris discrepans, Daws., Geol. Rept. of Canada, 1871, p. 54, Pl. XVIII, f. 203-205. Considered as a species, it is evidently the ancestor of the former.
Habitat—Abounds at Talmage, over Coal, No. 1, of the Geol. Rept. of Ohio ; also in the subcarboniferous measures Of Virginia. Prof. W. M. Fontaine.
ALETHOPTERIS HELENAE, Lesqx., Plate XXX, Figs. 1-4.
Alethopteris Helenae, Lesqx., Geol. Rept. of Ala., 1876, p. 77, (mentioned.)
Fronds tripinnatifid, very large; primary pinnae linear-lanceolate in outline; secondary divisions in right angle, the upper ones open, all sublinear, gradually shorter and narrower in the upper part of the fronds; pinnules also in right angle to the rachis, connate and decurrent at the base; medial nerve moderately thick; veins oblique, slighlly curved, forking once at the middle, with few intermediate simple veinlets very distinct.
The rachis is strong, half round, smooth, or minutely striate, with alternate pinnae in right angle to it. The pinnules average a little more than one centimeter in length in the middle of the largest pinnae, seven millimeters broad at the decurring base, which generally, as seen, Plate XXX, f. 3, joins the inferior pinnules quite near the midrib. Toward the end of the pinnae, the divisions become gradually shorter and more connivent, and the apex is thus undulate, with a very small obtuse terminal pinnule. The veins sometimes simple, generally fork once near the middle, and rarely one of the branches is divided again in joining the borders. They are more or less oblique to the rachis, and slightly curve in traversing the lamina, generally reaching the border in a slight upward deflection. The characters of this species, far different from those of Alethopteris Lonchitica, relate it to Alethopteris Grandini, Brgt., Hist., d. Veg. foss., p. 286, Pl. XCI, f. 1-4. The venation is nearly of the same type, more compact in this species than in the European form, which has also the pinnules comparatively shorter and broader, not decurrent, exactly oblong, broadly obtuse, not narrowed to the apex, altogether a different facies. The delineation of Plate XXX, f. 1 and 2 is not perfectly correct; the base of the pinnules is more distinctly decurrent, and generally the basilar border of each inferior pinnule is rounded and cut to near the base of the midrib, where the connection is made, as in Plate XXX, f. 3.
Habitat— Roof shale of Helena coal mines, Alabama, sent by Prof. Eng. A. Smith, and more recently by Mr. T. H. Aldrich, from the same locality. Also found at the base of the Chester Limestone, Mercer Co., Ill., by Prof. A. H. Worthen. The cabinet of Prof. Orton, of the Ohio University, has large specimens from the roof shale of the Jackson Coal of Ohio.
ALETHOPTERIS PENNSYLVANICA, Lesqx.
Boston Jour., S. N. H., v. VI, p. 498.
Geol. of Penn'a, 1858, p. 864, Plate XI, f. 1, 2.
Geol. Rept. of Ill., p. 469.
Schp., Paleont. Veget., 1, p. 562.
Frond tripinnate; lower pinnae bipinnatifld in the upper part, with short linear secondary divisions, open, rigid, alternate, cut in short very obtusc leaftets connate to the middle, gradually confluent to near the apex; middle and upper pinnae of various size, with pinnules in right angle, joined near the rachis, either short, lingulate, obtuse, entire, or longer, linear, obtuse, undulate; midrib distinct to the apex, strong; veins thick, very distinct, simple, or rarely faring once in the middle.
The species has the same general aspect as the former, from which it differs by the shorter half round divisions of the upper pinnae, the lingulate leaflets, very obtuse and somewhat narrowed in the middle, their base in right angle, never decurring, and by the nervation, the veins being thicker and more generally simple than forking. Schimper, 1.c., compares the species to Alethopteris Grandini, Brgt., to which it is indeed closely related, differing essentially by the venation, which is less oblique, mostly simple, while in the European species the veins are all forked.
Habitat—Salem vein, near Pottsville. One indifferent fragmentary specimen from the roof shale of the Morris Coal, Ill., is apparently referable to this species. The cabinet of Mr. R. D. Lacoe has specimens from Maltby, Pa
ALETHOPTERIS AQUILINA, Schloth.
Filicites aquilinus, Schloth., Flor. d. Vorw., Pl. V, f. 8; Pl. XIV, f. 21.
Pecopteris aquilina, Brgt., Hist. d. veg. foss., p. 284, Pl. XC.
Alethopteris aquilina, Schp., Paleont. Veget., I, p. 556, Pl. XXX, f. 8-10.
Lesqx., Geol. of Penn'a, 1858, p. 864.
Divisions of fronds as in the former species; pinnae in right angle to the rachis, sublinear, a little broader in the middle, rapidly narrowed near the apex; pinnules in right angle, linear-oblong, slighlly enlarging and decurring at the base, connate, or distinct; terminal pinnules small, lanceolate, obtuse; veins slighlly oblique, forking twice.
In the American form the pinnules are generally more distinctly narrowed to the obtuse apex, rather lanceolate than oblong. The substance of the leaflets is more coriaceous than in any of the former species and the pinnules are generally flattened on the borders as by marginal fructifications.
Habitat—The best specimens I have seen were communicated by Mr. I. Price Wetherill, of Tremont, Pa., without indication of locality. Specimens bearing the name of this species are found in nearly all the collections; but most of them represent either the following species or Alethopteris Lonchitica, and therefore though repeatedly quoted as common in the Coal measures, it is as far as I know it, one of the rarest.
ALETHOPTERIS AMBIGUA, Sp. nov., Plate XXXI, Figs. 1-4.
Alethopteris aquilina, Lesqx., Ill. Geol. Rept., II, p. 438.
Fronds tripinnate; rachis thick, with cortex striate; primary divisions dichotomous near the base, large, bipinnate in the lower part, pinnate in the upper; secondary pinnae open, or in right angle, linear or lanceolate toward the apex; pinnules narrow, linear or lingulate, obtuse, all connate at a distance from the rachis; midrib very thick abruptly dissolved under the apex; veins nearly in right angle, forking once or simple.
From the very thick substance of the leaflets of this Fern always flattened along the borders, and from the shape of the pinnae and pinnules, most like those of the former species, but smaller, I considered it formerly as the American representative of Alethopteris aquilina. For the lateral veins are generally immersed into the epidermis and thus appear crowded and much more divided than they are really. But among a large number of specimens from Clinton and Cannelton, I have found some with the venation perfectly distinct, of a character which forcibly indicates this Fern as of a different species. Plate XXXI, f. 1 shows the base of a pinna with the rachis, eight millimeters broad, striate upon the coaly surface, forking or dichotomous, indicating a fragment of a very large frond. The secondary divisions of alethopterid character are gradually shorter toward the apex, the pinnae more and more connate toward the top, passing to simple, first undulate and then entire shorter pinnules. The leaflets as seen Plate XXXI, f. 2 are quite unequal in length, and in Plate XXXI, f. 1 they are long and regularly undulate on the pinnae of the right side while on those of the left they are much shorter and entire. Mr. R. D. Lacoe, of Pittston, has in his cabinet very large specimens of this species with the primary pinnae sixty centimeters long and the secondary branches twenty-five centimeters, whose pinnules two to two and a half centimeters long, are, by size and shape, very similar to those of Alethopteris aquilina. The venation however is exactly like that of this species.
Habitat—It is as generally distributed in the American coal measures as Alethopteris aquilina is in those of Europe. It ranges from the base to the upper part of the middle carboniferous series. Abundant at Clinton, Mo.; found at the St. John Coal, Perry Co., Ill.; also at Grape Creek, same State. Common at Cannelton. I have one specimen from Irwin Station, Pa., horizon of the Pittsburgh coal.
Fronds large, quadripinnate, very broad; primary divisions large, more than fifty centimeters long; secondary pinnae linear, tapering in the upper part to an oval obtuse leaflet, oblique, rigid, parallel, distant; tertiary pinne open, short, linear, obtuse; pinnules mostly in right angle to the broad rachis, either oblong, obtuse, connate near the base, or half round, joined to the middle, becoming gradually connate in their whole length toward the upper part of the pinnae, all with borders reflexed; medial nerve thick, abruptly dissolved near the apex; veins nearly at right angle, simple or forked at the base only.
The first specimens, Plate XXVIII, are from mere fragments received from Illinois. After the engraving of the plate, I found in the Cabinet of Prof. Ed. Orton, of the Ohio University, many large slabs, representing the species one of the specimens, fifty centimeters square, being covered with primary divisions, none of which however is seen in its whole length. The primary rachis or stipe is eight centimeters broad, flattened, covered with a thick irregularly striate coaly epidermis. The rachis of the primary pinnae seen at the base of Plate XXXIII, f. 1, is also broad, fourteen millimeters near its base, still five to seven millimeters in the upper part, where the pinnae are broken; lower secondary pinnae oblique, distant, three to four centimeters between their point of attachment, linear, narrowed only in the upper part, where the pinnae become simply divided by the connection of the pinnules; tertiary divisions in a broad angle of divergence, short, the lower pairs three centimeters long, the others a little shorter, all with a broad flat rachis, two millimeters at base, gradually and slightly narrower to the middle of the half round small terminal pinnule, where it is abruptly effaced, being there still one millimeter. The ultimate divisions or pinnules, alternate, like all the others, are connate to the middle, half round, with reflexed flat borders, as seen Plate XXVIII, f. 5a and 5b. The fragment Plate XXVIII, f. 6 of the same plate, indicates a subdivision of the pinnae, which is not seen attached to any part of the fronds, though similar separated fragments are seen upon the large specimen of Prof. Orton. The nervation is marked, enlarged, Plate XXVIII, f. 5a and 6a and the border f. 5a, bears, where the reflexed rim is detached, the points of attachment of sporanges, f. 5b. These, however, are not always perceivable; for in the large specimen, the borders of the leaflets are quite flat, or, when inflated, the reflexed rim does not separate.
The divisions of this Fern are of the same character as those of the genus. But the species differs from all, not merely by the fructification, but by the very large rachis, typically continued by subdivisions to the mid rib of the leaflets. It seems probable, not only from this last character, but from the reflexed border of all the pinnules, without exception, that the specimens merely represent the fructified part of a species whose sterile fronds may have a different character.
Prof. Weiss has, in his Foss. fl., p. 82, Pl. XI, f. 1, under the name of Alethopteris brevis, a species, which is closely allied to the American plant, and which, indeed, when known from better specimens may be referable to the same. It represents part of a pinna with broad radius (round and smooth, not flat and striate), bearing linear divisions, with alternate, distant, sessile, linear, obtuse, undulate pinnules, none of which are connate at the base. From the enlarging f. la and lb, the veins are seen oblique, curved in passing to the borders and all simple. In the American specimens, the pinnules are all connate, and the veins are about in right angle or straight, and half of them, at least, forked at the base. These differences are as far as shown by the specimen of Prof. Weiss, sufficient to authorize a specific distinction, the more so, that the author co npares his species to Pecopteris Miltoni, Brgt., and Alethopteris falcata, Goepp, which both have oblique curved veins, and to which our species bears no relation whatever.
Habitat—Grape Creek, Ill., specimens communicated by Wm. Gibson and Wm. Gurley, Pl. XXVIII. The others, in the cabinet of Prof. Orton, P1. XXXIII, are from Barnesville, Ohio, roof shale of the coal.
Pinnate or bipinnate; rachis slender; pinnules alternate, contiguous, imbricate in the upper part, ovate-lanceolate, rounded to a blunt point; borders more or less undulate; upper leaflets attached to the rachis by the whole base, the lower ones sessile, rounded on the borders to the point of attachment and slightly cordate; medial nerve strong, ascending to the apex; veins rising from thc medial nerve in acute angle, then curving towards the borders which they reach straight and in right angle.
The peculiar character of this fragment relates this species to Neuropteris by the nervation and the mode of attachment of the lower pinnules; while those of the upper part of the pinna are joined to the rachis by their whole base as in Alethopteris. The leaflets are all in right angle to the narrow rachis, the borders distinct to the base, though some of them are contiguous, even imbricate in their whole length. The veins are all from the midrib, dichotomous, once or twice forked, thin, straight to the borders in reaching them. I do not know of any species to which this may be related. The description of the author is very exact, as seen from comparison with the specimens.
Habitat—Base of the coal measures near Rushville, Ohio.
|SPECIES INSUFFICIENTLY KNOWN.
Pinnae with a broad rachis, simply pinnate; pinnules attached to the rachis by their whole base, disconnected, imbricate on the borders, lanceolate, blunt at the apex, scythe-shaped, very entire; medial nerve strong, veins in right angle, very thin and close, either forking at the base or simple.
The specimen a mere fragment, eight centimeters long, probably represents the circinnate upper part of a pinna of Alethopteris in process of unfolding. The rachis, comparatively very thick, five millimeters at the base, rapidly thinning to the apex, bears the crowded pinnules on one side only, and is also slightly hooked, less however than the leaves. These, three and a half centimeters long, smaller in the lower part, appear simple pinnae, with veins scarcely discernible with a strong glass.
Habitat—Maxon Creek in concretions.
ALETHOPTERIS MARGINATA, (Brgt.) Goepp.
Pecopteris marginata, Brgt., Hist. d. Veg. Foss., p. 291, Pl. LXXXVII, f. 2.
Alethopteris marginata, Goepp., Syst., p. 301.
Lesqx., Geol. of Penn'a, 1858, p. 865.
Schp., Paleont. veget., 1, p. 559.
Frond bipinnatifid; pinnae sessile, open, deeply pinnatifid; pinnules contiguous, oblong, slighlly obtuse, de-current, undulate-sinuate; terminal leaflets oblong-lanceolate obtuse; rachis and medial nerve rough, veins very slender, perpendicular to the midrib, nearly simple.
I remarked in the original description, that in the specimen referred to this species, the pinnules are smaller, but that it represents probably the upper part of a frond. The leaflets are scarcely decurrent and distinct to near the base.
The specimen is too small and indistinctly characterized to ascertain its reference to the European species. It may represent only a variety of Alethopteris aquilina. No other fragments referable to the same species have been found since.
The same uncertainty exists in regard to Alethopteris laevis, Lesqx., Geol. of Penn'a, 1858, p. 865, a form represented in small fragments whose smooth surfaces do not preserve any trace of nervation.
Habitat—The first is from Tremont New Vein. The second, from Gate Vein, New Philadelphia, Anthracite basin, Pa.
Fronds simply pinnate; pinnae large, linear, entire, rounded and lapering into an obtuse point; medial nerve strong, ascending to the apex; veins once or twice dichotomous, forking generally near the midrib, parallel, curving and in right angle or slightly oblique to the borders, and slightly bending upwards in reaching them.
The fragment described indicates, from the author's remarks, a very large leaf, as it measures seven centimeters in length and twelve millimeters in width. The basilar part is broken. From the size and the shape of the leaf it is comparable to Danaeites (Alethopteris) Macrophylla, Newb'y; but the venation is different, the veins being more oblique, apparently more distant, all forking once or twice, curved downward to the midrib and upwards to the border. These characters are those of Megalopteris.
The points or dots remarked upon the surface of the leaflets by Prof. Andrews, are regularly placed in rows parallel to the veins. They are the remnants or the base of scales similar to those often seen upon the leaflets of species of Acrostichum; Acrostichum meridense, Klotz, for example, a species from Venezuela, whose venation is analogous to that of the fossil fragments described above.
Habitat—Near base of the coal measures, Rushville, Ohio, with Megalopteris.
Fronds large, simply pinnate; rachis thick, scaly towards the base; pinnae long, narrow, linear-lanceolate, acuminate, entire, enlarged at base on the lower side to a decurring auricle, generally free; medial nerve percurrent; lateral veins open, curving to the borders, forking twice.
PROTOBLECHNUM HOLDENI (Andrews), Lesqx.
Alethopteris Holdeni, Andrews, Geol. Rept. of Ohio, Paleont., II, p. 420, Pl. LI, f. 1, 2.
Specific characters same as described for the genus.
The species, a remarkable one, is represented by two opposite extremities of a frond which, judging from the size of the main rachis, was, in its original state, fifty to sixty centimeters long. The pinnae are simple, the lower ones shorter, two centimeters long, one centimeter broad near the base, distant; the middle ones six to seven centimeters long of the same width and in the same direction, nearly in right angle to the rachis, are slightly falcate, dilated at the base on the lower side into an obtuse auricle; the upper ones are close, less distinctly scythe shaped, but quite as long, the terminal leaflets being still six centimeters long. The rachis is thick nearly one centimeter at the base, there covered with a thick coating of long scales. The venation as described above is of the Callipteridium type and considering this, only, the species might have been described with that genus. Put the character of the simply pinnate fronds remove it from the Alethopterids, whose fronds, as we know them until now, are always bi- or tripinnate.
The relation of this Fern is rather to the Blechneae. Lomaria attenuata, Willd., has its pinnae coriaceous and of the same shape as this fossil plant; and in species of Blechnum the similarity is marked not merely by the form of the pinnae but by the venation. The veins in Blechnum glandulosum among others, being curved and forking twice.
Habitat—Same locality as the former, Prof. E. B. Andrews.