Abstract

The placoderm Titanichthys from the Late Devonian (Famennian) is based on incomplete and fragmentary specimens that have hindered understanding of its overall anatomy and phylogenetic relationships. A new, nearly complete, articulated specimen from the Upper Devonian Cleveland Shale provides new information about the previously undescribed rostral, postmarginal, postsuborbital, submarginal, posterior superognathal plates, and the nasal capsule. A revised diagnosis is provided for the genus. Three new diagnostic characters are identified, including a transversely elliptical rostral plate that does not contact adjacent plates, a reduced posterior superognathal, and a median dorsal plate that inserts into the posterior dorsal lateral plate. The first comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of Titanichthys indicates that the genus is a basal aspinothoracid arthrodire closely related to the enigmatic taxa Bungartius and Tafilalichthys.

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