Large Vertebrate Fossil Species
in the Ancient World
THIS APPENDIX enumerates prehistoric species (mostly Tertiary and Quaternary) reported in paleontological literature for locales where the ancients observed giant remains. This is not an exhaustive list of fossil fauna from each region, but it does indicate examples of large and unusual remains of extinct animal species that were likely to attract attention in antiquity. The survey begins in Greece and proceeds clockwise around the Mediterranean.
Attica (Pikermi): mastodons Mammut (Z.) borsoni, Stegotetrabelodon, Choerolophodon, Deinotherium giganteum, Mastodon pentelici; the huge herbivore Chalicotherium; giraffids Palaeotragus and giant Helladotherium; giant hyena; several rhinoceros species; ostrich; sabertoothed tiger; giant tortoise
Boeotia: mastodons, saber-toothed tigers, cave bears and lions, rhinoceroses
Chalkidiki, Kassandra Peninsula (ancient Pallene): mastodons, Deinotherium giganteum
Euboea: Elephas species, Deinotherium, Archidiskodon (or M.) meridionalis; rhinoceroses; large giraffids