Timeline of geography, paleontology

Geography is the study of the locational and spatial variation of both natural and human phenomena on Earth. The word derives from the Greek words Ge or Gaea, both meaning "Earth", and graphein meaning "to describe" and "to write".


Timeline of geography, paleontology
Date Event
25 Pomponius Mela formalizes the climatic zone system
1569 Gerardus Mercator issues the first Mercator projection map
1620 Francis Bacon analyzes the scientific method in his Great Instauration of Learning
1686 Edmund Halley presents a systematic study of the trade winds and monsoons and identifies solar heating as the cause of atmospheric motions
1686 Edmund Halley establishes the relationship between barometric pressure and height above sea level
1716 Edmund Halley suggests that polar aurorae are caused by "magnetic effluvia" moving along the Earth's magnetic field lines
1770 The fossilised bones of a huge animal (later identified as a Mosasaur) are found in a quarry near Maastricht in the Netherlands.
1795 Georges Cuvier identifies the bones found in the Netherlands in 1770 as belonging to an extinct reptile.
1811 Mary Anning discovers the fossilised remains of an ichthyosaur at Lyme Regis.
1821 William Buckland finds the remains of a hyenas' den in Yorkshire, containing the bones of lions, elephants and rhinoceros.
1821-22 Mary Anning discovers the world's first Plesiosaur skeleton at Lyme Regis.
1822 Gideon Mantell discovers the fossilized skeleton of an Iguanodon dinosaur
1823 Human bones are found with those of the woolly mammoth at Paviland Cave on the Gower Peninsula, proving that the two had lived on earth at the same time.
1855 The first Archaeopteryx fossil found in Bavaria, Germany.
1858 The first dinosaur skeleton, Hadrosaurus, is excavated in the United States and described by Joseph Leidy
1869 Joseph Lockyer starts the scientific journal Nature
1871 Othniel Charles Marsh discovers the first American pterosaur fossils.
1878 The first Diplodocus skeleton is found at Como Bluff, Wyoming
1905 Tyrannosaurus rex is described and named by Henry Fairfield Osborn
1909 Discovery of the Burgess Shale Cambrian fossil site
1912 Continental Drift proposed by Alfred Wegener, leading to plate tectonics and explanation of many surface features.
1920 Andrew Douglass proposes dendrochronology dating
1920 Milutin Milankovic proposes that long term climatic cycles may be due to changes in the eccentricity of the Earth's orbit and changes in the Earth's obliquity
1947 Willard Libby introduces carbon-14 dating
1974 Donald Johanson and Tom Gray discover a 3.5 million-year-old female hominid fossil that is 40% complete and name it "Lucy"
1980 Luis Alvarez, Walter Alvarez, Frank Asaro, and Helen Michel propose that a giant comet or asteroid may have struck the Earth approximately 65 million years ago thereby causing massive extinctions and enriching the iridium in the K-T layer
1984 Hou Xianguang discovers the Chengjiang Cambrian fossil site

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