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Issue Date 01.09.1997 ID Michel: 1568-1571 Scott: Stanley Gibbons: Yvert: UPU: N/A Category: pF Author Uttar Pradesh Stamps in set 4 Value 10 Williamsonia sewardiana
2 Birbalsahnia divyadarshanii
Size (width x height) Layout Products FDC x 1 Paper Perforation Print Technique Printed by Quantity Issuing Authority Indian Post
Palaeobotany is the study of plant fossils preserved in rocks. The word "Fossil" has been defined as "any evidence of prehistoric life". Plant fossils were formed by burial and preservation in the sediments in the geological past. During transport to the site of burial the plant parts underwent decomposition and deformation in varying degrees. The environment of depositional site control the preservation of these plant remains. Research in the science of palaeobotany deals with both large and minute plant fossils as they help to deduce the antiquity, radiation and evolutionary pattern of life on earth, the vegetation which was responsible for coal/oil reserves on earth, environment and climate of the past and correlation of sedimentary sequences.
The first mention of a fossil plant was made by a German scholar Albertus Magnus in the thirteenth century. In India, the first fossil plant was recorded in the later part of the eighteenth century, although detailed studies were carried out only in the later half of the nineteenth century, almost entirely at the Geological Survey of India, Calcutta.
Professor Birbal Sahni was the first Indian to revitalize study of Indian fossil plants.
Williamsonia sewardiana - extinct genus of plant belonging to Bennettitales, an order of seed plants which bore a resemblance to cycads.
A model of the extinct plant Williamsonia sewardiana which thrived in Rajmahal, Bihar about 140 million years ago. This model is based on the reconstruction envisaged by Prof. Birbal Sahni. Originally described as Zamia gigas by William Crawford Williamson. William Carruthers proposed the name Williamsonia in an 1870 paper of his, with the type species being Williamsonia gigas
An e Fossilized specimens of Williamsonia have been discovered worldwide.
- An important discovery of Prof. Birbal Sahni is the extinct plant
group named Pentoxylae from Nipania in Dumka district, Rajmahal Hills,
Bihar (age 110-114 million years). Reconstruction of plant with leaves,
stem, flowers. Pentoxylon
takes its name from the five wedges of wood that characterize its stem.
Pentoxylon is a Gondwanan taxon, which has been found in India,
Australia and New Zealand. Pentoxylon first appears in the later part
of the Paleozoic, but its greatest diversity and abundance appears to
be in the Jurassic, continuing into the Early Cretaceous.
Glossopteris - The tongue-shaped leaf Glossopteris, represents a unique group of extinct vascular plants (age : Permian, 250-280 million years). During this period India occupied a position south of equator close to South Pole as a part of a very large continent which included South America, Antarctica, Africa and Australia, called Gondwanaland. This vegetation was responsible for the precious coal reserves in peninsular India.
Birbalsahnia divyadarshanii - Fossil of an enigmatic flower-like organ of the extinct plant named after eminent Indian Palaeobotanists - Prof. Birbal Sahni and Prof. Divya Darshan Pant, discovered from Hura Coalfield, Santhal Pargana, Bihar (age 250-280 million years).
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