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Sphenothallus from the Lower Silurian of China

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 May 2016

Wang Yi
Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing 210008, China,
Hao Shou-Gang
Department of Geology, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China
Chen Xu
Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing 210008, China,
Rong Jia-Yu
Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing 210008, China,
Li Guo-Xiang
Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing 210008, China,
Liu Jianbo
Department of Geology, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China
Xu Honghe
Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing 210008, China,


The genus Sphenothallus was erected by Hall (1847, p. 261), who originally considered it a land plant. Sphenothallus was later classified as a marine invertebrate. Moore and Harrington (1956, p. F65) regarded Sphenothallus as a hydrozoan or scyphozoan. Van Iten et al. (1992, p. 139) supported Moore and Harrington's idea, and argued that it displays a close relationship to conularids (also see Li, 2000, p. 91). However, Mason and Yochelson (1985, p. 93–94) suggested that Sphenothallus is an annelid or “worm” (also see Fauchald et al., 1986, p. 64; Feldmann et al., 1986, p. 344–345; Choi, 1990, p. 403; Bartels et al., 1998, p. 114–117). The exact phylogenetic affinity of Sphenothallus is still debated.

Paleontological Notes
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