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When Life Nearly Died


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Table of Contents

Prologue: The Geological Time-scale * Chapter 1: Antediluvian Sauria * Chapter 2: Murchison Names the Permian * Chapter 3: The Death of Catastrophism * Chapter 4: The Concept that Dared Not Speak Its Name * Chapter 5: Impact! * Chapter 6: Diversity, Extinction and Mass Extinction * Chapter 7: Homing in on the Event * Chapter 8: Life's Biggest Challenge * Chapter 9: A Tale of Two Continents * Chapter 10: On the River Sakmara * Chapter 11: What Caused the Biggest Catastrophe of all Time? * Chapter 12: Recovery from the Bring * Chapter 13: The Sixth Mass Extinction?

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What caused the greatest mass extinction in Earth's history? Michael Benton assembles all the evidence and gives his verdict.

About the Author

Michael J. Benton is Professor of Vertebrate Palaeontology and head of the Palaeobiology Research Group at the University of Bristol, which was identified by the Center for World University Rankings as the top palaeontology research group in the world. He has written more than fifty books, including the standard textbooks in palaeontology and When Life Nearly Died, also published by Thames & Hudson. Benton regularly offers media comment on new dinosaur discoveries.


'A superb book that tells a gripping tale ... a denouement worthy of Hercule Poirot' - The Times Higher Education Supplement
'Brings back to Earth Science a sense of adventure ... it is both a wonderfully good read and a valued reference' - James Lovelock, author of Gaia

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