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Ten fun facts about Mary Anning


1. The Woman Who Discovered Dinosaurs

Mary Anning was born into a large family of ten children, yet only two of them managed to survive into adulthood - Mary and one of her siblings. Despite the odds, Mary went on to become a renowned fossil collector and palaeontologist, making significant contributions to the field of geology. Her discoveries revolutionised the way we understand the history of the Earth and the creatures that once lived on it.

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2. 19th c. Fossil Pioneer

Mary Anning was a 19th century fossil collector and paleontologist who made significant contributions to the science of paleontology. She is the inspiration behind the popular tongue twister "She sells seashells by the sea shore," which was first published in 1908. Mary Anning was born in Dorset, England, and spent much of her life collecting fossils from the cliffs along the English Channel. Her discoveries included the first ichthyosaur skeleton, the first two plesiosaur skeletons, and the first pterosaur skeleton found outside of Germany. Her work helped to revolutionize the scientific understanding of prehistoric life.

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3. Pioneer Fossil Collector and Paleontologist

When Mary Anning was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1846, the Geological Society, recognizing her immense contributions to the geological community, rallied together to raise money to cover her medical expenses. Mary Anning was a pioneering fossil collector and paleontologist who made significant discoveries in the Jurassic marine fossil beds of the cliffs along the English Channel. Her discoveries included the first ichthyosaur skeleton, the first two plesiosaur skeletons, and the first pterosaur skeleton found outside of Germany. Her work was highly influential in the development of early ideas about prehistoric life and the history of the Earth.

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4. 12-year-old Mary Anning makes first fossilized ichthyosaur discovery

At the tender age of 12, Mary Anning and her brother made a remarkable discovery - the fossilized remains of an ichthyosaur, an extinct marine reptile. This remarkable find was the first of its kind to be unearthed in England, and it would go on to revolutionize the field of paleontology. Mary's discovery was a major contribution to the scientific community, and it helped to shape our understanding of the history of life on Earth.

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5. The Woman Who Faced Great Danger To Find Fossils

Mary Anning was an intrepid fossil hunter who faced great danger in her searches. In 1833, she narrowly avoided being crushed by a landslide while searching for fossils on the cliffs of Lyme Regis. Despite the risks, she persevered and went on to make some of the most important fossil discoveries of the 19th century.

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6. " Lightning Survivor to Fossil Collector"

At just 15 months old, Mary Anning had a brush with death when a neighbor who was holding her was struck by lightning. Miraculously, both Mary and the neighbor survived the incident, and Mary went on to become a renowned fossil collector and paleontologist, making significant contributions to the field of geology.

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7. The Woman Who Discovered Fossils

In 1826, Mary Anning opened an in-home store in the small seaside town of Lyme Regis, England, where she sold a variety of fossils to customers from all over the world. One of her most notable customers was King Frederick Augustus II of Saxony, who purchased several of her fossils for his personal collection. Mary Anning's discoveries and sales of fossils helped to revolutionize the field of paleontology and her legacy continues to this day.

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8. Pioneer Fossil Collector and Paleontologist

Despite her immense contributions to the field of geology, Mary Anning was not allowed to become a member of the Geological Society of London due to the fact that women were not permitted to attend meetings. This was a great injustice to Anning, who was a pioneering fossil collector and paleontologist, and whose discoveries of prehistoric marine reptiles revolutionized the field of geology.

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9. Religious Convictions Led to Switch to Anglican Church

Mary Anning was a woman of deep faith, and her religious convictions led her to switch from a Congregational church to an Anglican church. She was highly active in her new church, attending services regularly and participating in various church activities. She was known for her generous donations to the church, and her commitment to her faith was an inspiration to those around her.

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10. Charles Dickens Tribute to Mary Anning

In 1865, the renowned author Charles Dickens wrote an article about the life of Mary Anning in his magazine, "All the Year Round". Mary Anning was a pioneering fossil collector and paleontologist who made significant contributions to the science of paleontology. Her discoveries of fossils in the Jurassic cliffs of Lyme Regis, England, revolutionized the scientific understanding of prehistoric life. Dickens' article was a tribute to her remarkable life and accomplishments.

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