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Glossary of trilobite terms

Term Definition
Arthropoda Group including insects, crustaceans, spiders, scorpions, and horse shoe crabs, etc; both living and extinct examples
Cephalon Trilobite head; anterior end
Exoskeleton The hard mineralised shell most commonly found fossilised; for protection and attachment of soft tissues
Hypostome Plate on underside of trilobite in front of mouth
Pygidium Tail region; posterior end
Thorax Mid-region of the exoskeleton; made of several segments
Taxonomic hierachy The system of grouping similar organisms at several layers: phyla, class, orders, family, genera and species

Author: Sue Beardmore
Last updated: 18/11/06

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Websites produced by students on the MSc Palaeobiology programme in the Department of Earth Sciences at the University of Bristol for academic year 2006-7