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a herbivorous iguanodontian dinosaur from the Early Cretaceous of England.
Pronunciation: bar-il-ee-um
Meaning: Heavy ilium
Author/s: Norman (2010)
Synonyms: See below
First Discovery: East Sussex, England
Chart Position: 575

Barilium dawsoni

The remains of what would become Barilium were discovered at Shornden Quarry in the Wadhurst Clay Formation of East Sussex and described by Richard Lydekker as Iguanodon dawsoni in 1888.[1] However, later research showed that Iguanodon dawsoni wasn't, in fact, a species of Iguanodon. And it's far from the only English specimen of Iguanodon to have been misidentified.

In 1825 Gideon Mantell named Iguanodon for a handful of teeth from England's "Tilgate Forest" then all and sundry added species to it based on bits and bobs from elsewhere in England, Belgium, possibly France, Spain, Germany, maybe Portugal and even Mongolia. As we all know, too many cooks spoil the broth, especially true if the ingredients are poor quality and have been simmering since the latter half of the 19th century, but things were looking up in 2000 after a long overdue review of the genus on the whole.

Two years after receiving a 1998 petition from Charig and Chapman, the ICZN booted Mantell's diognosis-dodging Iguanodon anglicus from its perch and installed Boulenger's Iguanodon bernissartensis as Iguanodon name-bearing yardstick, due in no small part to its infinately superior and well-studied remains. This was a good thing, because Iguanodon was pulled from the brink of oblivion where it had been dragged by many questionable fossils from a 40 million year time span and is now stable and safe. But it was also a bad thing, kind of, because shedloads of remains that had been erroneously tagged "Iguanodon" obviously weren't and they had to be sifted through, studied and sorted.

As part of the ensuing clean up job, David Norman waded into the Wealden cesspit in 2010, nabbed Iguanodon dawsoni and named Barilium[2] — a rustic chap around 8 meters long and 1.5 tons heavy with a chunky, name-prompting ilium (hip bone) and short Camptosaurus-like spines on its vertebrae. At the same time he grabbed its Wealden bedfellow Iguanodon fittoni (Lyddekker, 1889) and coined Hypselospinus, which was much smaller and gracile, and sported spines which were longer, narrow, and more steeply inclined. Following other "Iguanodon" species that had previously been renamed (See Owenodon, Mantellisaurus, Dollodon, Dakotadon and Altirhinus) this was another step in the right direction. But there were more reassignments still to come, and some of those reassignments have since been, well, reassigned.

Barilium would have been better represented than it is, but Norman was a bit over enthusiastic himself when assigning remains to it. A lower jaw (NHMUK 28660) from Cuckfield, which was originally described in 1848 by Gideon Mantell and assigned to Iguanodon anglicum (corrected to anglicus by Norman, 1986), was reclaimed from Norman's critter and used by McDonald to anchor Kukufeldia tilgatensis in 2010.[3] A large pelvis attached to some vertebrae (NHMUK R3788), found in May 1873 by J. Hopkinson in the Old Roar Quarry,[4] was reclaimed too and succesfully renamed Sellacoxa pauli by Carpenter and Nishida in 2010,[5] which was nice, because their "Torilion" and "Wadhurstia", based on the exact same remains as Barilium and Hypselospinus respectively, were immediately chalked-off as junior synonyms. You see what happens when you don't pay attention?
(Dawson's Heavy Hip)Etymology
Barilium is derived from the Greek "barys" (heavy) and the Latin "ilium" (a bone of the hip). The species epithet, dawsoni, honors discoverer Charles Dawson.
The remains of Barilium were discovered at Shornden Quarry in the Wadhurst Clay Formation, St Leonards-on-Sea, Hastings, East Sussex, England, by Charles Dawson.
The holotype is BMNH R798 (a back vertebra) and R802 (a left ilium).
Era: Mesozoic
Epoch: Early Cretaceous
Stage: Valanginian
Age range: 140-136 mya
Est. max. length: 8 meters
Est. max. hip height: ?
Est. max. weight: 2 tons
Diet: Herbivore
Iguanodon dawsoni (Lydekker, 1888)
Torilion dawsoni (Carpenter & Ishida, 2010)
1. Lydekker R. (1888) "Note on a new Wealden iguanodont and other dinosaurs". Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society, 44: 46-61.
2. Norman D.B. (2010) "A taxonomy of Iguanodontians from the lower Wealden Group (Cretaceous: Valanginian) of southern England". Zootaxa, 2489: 47-66.
3. McDonald A.T., Barrett P.M. and Chapman S.D. (2010) "A new basal iguanodont (Dinosauria: Ornithischia) from the Wealden (Lower Cretaceous) of England". Zootaxa, 2569: 1–43.
4. Hopkinson J. (1874) "Excursion to Eastbourne and St. Leonards, May 23rd and 24th, 1873". Proceedings of the Geologists’ Association, 3 : 211–214.
5. Carpenter K. and Ishida Y. (2010) "Early and "Middle" Cretaceous Iguanodonts in Time and Space". Journal of Iberian Geology 36(2): 145-164.
6. Norman D.B. (2004) "Basal Iguanodontia" in Weishampel, Dodson and Osmólska (eds.) "The Dinosauria: Second Edition".
7. Naish D. and Martill D.M. (2008) "Dinosaurs of Great Britain and the role of the Geological Society of London in their discovery: Ornithischia". Journal of the Geological Society, 165 (3): 613-623.
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To cite this page:
Atkinson, L. "BARILIUM :: from DinoChecker's dinosaur archive".
›. Web access: 24th Feb 2018.