In the pantheon of palaeontologists the name of Dolf Seilacher ranks very high. Yet in some ways he remains an outsider, enormously respected but answering to continental traditions that in many respects are different, even antithetical, to the Anglo-Saxon world. This is no criticism and Seilacher has been widely influential, perhaps most obviously in his approach to functional morphology. Yet his inspiration is even more widespread, extending to seminal work on trace fossils, fossil-Lagerstätten and most controversially his productive re-assessments of the problematic Ediacaran assemblages.

Long based in Tübingen, upon his retirement Seilacher took the opportunity to spend part of...

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