Abstract

A jaw fragment of a giant temnospondyl from the Upper Triassic or Lower Jurassic of Lesotho (southern Africa), initially regarded as a Triassic mastodonsaurid because of its size, is redescribed in detail and considered to be a member of the Brachyopoidea (Brachyopidae + Chigutisauridae sensu Warren and Marsicano [2000]) based on its dental morphology, presence of a well-developed ectopterygoid tusk, and the concavity of the ventral margin of the skull in lateral view. Recognition of the specimen as a brachyopid, rather than as a chigutisaurid, is of palaeobiogeographical significance in representing one of the youngest known brachyopids from Gondwana. The Lesotho specimen is also of palaeobiological interest in that an estimate of its overall size indicates that it represents one of the largest amphibians sensu lato ever known.

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