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By: Jens Lorenz Franzen and Kirsten M Brown
213 pages, 83 colour photos, 27 colour illustrations, 19 b&w photos, 41 line illus
In this title, one of the world's leading experts on horse evolution traces the rise of the domesticated horse, Equus caballus, and its extant relatives and extinct ancestors. Long domesticated, related to rhinoceroses, and descended from a creature the size of a hare, horses are a fascinating study in evolution. Jens Franzen's account explores the early evolution and eventual diversification of horse anatomy to explain how and why these once widespread and varied mammals became the common horses, zebras, and asses we know today.
Beginning with their evolutionary rise roughly 55 million years ago, Franzen traces a history etched in fossils. He identifies the points at which changing environments led some horse ancestors to adapt and thrive - and why most failed and are now extinct. In presenting this story, Franzen hews closely to the Frankfurt theory of evolution and explains how it applies to the wide variations in the evolution of horse species. Accessibly written and featuring full-color photographs and illustrations throughout, "The Rise of Horses" is the complete chronicle of the evolution of the equids.
Overall, a useful popular book for the intended audience. Choice 2010 Goff combines teaching and research to create a novel way of looking at athletics. Choice 2010 A comprehensive account, with full-coloured photographs and clear drawings that are very useful for teachers and students. -- Evelyne Bremond-Hoslet & Christian Denys Mammalia 2011
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Jens Lorenz Franzen is the former head of the Department of Paleoanthropology and Quartenary Paleontology at the Natural History Museum in Senckenberg, Germany. He has published hundreds of articles on fossils and evolution and is widely recognized as a leading expert on horse evolution.
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