David Meredith Seares Watson

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Watson, David Meredith Seares


Born June 18, 1886, in Manchester; died July 23, 1973. English paleontologist. Fellow of the Royal Society of London (1922; vice-president, 1938–39).

Watson graduated from the University of Manchester in 1907. In 1912 he began teaching at University College in London, where he was a professor of zoology from 1921 to 1951. His main works are devoted to ancient fishes, amphibians, and therapsids. Together with E. Goodrich and W. Gregory, Watson established that the predecessors of tetrapods (land vertebrates) are crossopterygian fish of the rhipidist group. He wrote a number of works on the history of ancient amphibians and, together with R. Broom, demonstrated that therapsids are the predecessors of the class Mammalia. He also conducted research on the phytogeny and classification of early reptiles and on the morphology and phylogeny of primitive fishes.

Watson was a foreign member of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR (1932) and a member of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.


Paleontology and Modern Biology. New Haven, Conn. [1951].
“On Bolosaurus and the Origin and Classification of Reptiles.” Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology, 1954, vol. 111.
“On Millerosaurus and the Early History of the Sauropsid Reptiles.” Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London: Ser. B: Biological Sciences, 1957, vol. 240.
“The Evolution of the Labyrinthodonts.” Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London: Ser. B: Biological Sciences, 1962, vol. 245.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.