Agrosaurus Seeley, 1891
Agrosaurus Seeley, 1891 "wild country lizard" or "hunting lizard"
AG-ro-SAWR-us (Gr. agro- "rural, wild" (from agros "open country,
rural land") or "hunting" (from agra "hunting"); both derivations for agro-
are found in Greek: agrostes "country dweller" or "hunter";
syagros "wild boar" or "hunter of boars") + Gr. sauros "lizard") (m)
for remains of a dinosaur H. Seeley mistakenly thought came from Australia. Seeley did not
provide a derivation for the name, which may allude to the then unsettled region of northern
Queensland, Australia, where the type specimen supposedly was found in 1844 by members of the
HMS Fly expedition, or to the dinosaur's supposed meat-eating habits, indicated by
"two laterally compressed claw-phalanges...of the type usual in carnivorous reptiles."
Seeley described Agrosaurus as a "theropod" related to Massospondylus--
prosauropods were still thought to be carnivores at the time. Recent research (Vickers-Rich,
Rich, McNamara & Milner, 1999; Benton, Juul, Storrs & Galton, 2000) indicates that the type
material was in fact found in Durdham Down, Bristol, England, was mislabeled,
and actually belongs to the British dinosaur Thecodontosaurus antiquus
[= Thecodontosaurus] [revised 5/2000]
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