The recovery of well-preserved silicified immature exuviae allows the first description of the early ontogeny of the phacopid Nephranops incisus incisus from the lower Famennian of Thuringia (central Germany). Evidence is presented that both planktonic and benthic protaspid larval stages were present in phacopid trilobites. Ontogenetic meraspid changes of this species are similar to those of Weyerites and Phacops, supporting the close phyletic relationships between these genera and the ontogenetic homogeneity of the Phacopidae.

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