When Life Nearly Died: The Greatest Mass Extinction of All Time

When Life Nearly Died: The Greatest Mass Extinction of All Time


By (author) Michael J. Benton

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  • Publisher: Thames & Hudson Ltd
  • Format: Paperback | 336 pages
  • Dimensions: 150mm x 226mm x 36mm | 635g
  • Publication date: 1 September 2005
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 050028573X
  • ISBN 13: 9780500285732
  • Sales rank: 186,134

Product description

The greatest mass extinction in Earth's history happened some 251 million years ago. In this cataclysm at least 90 percent of life was killed, both on land and in the sea, almost bringing evolution to a halt. What caused destruction on such an unimaginable scale? Was it the impact of a huge meteorite, or prolonged volcanic eruption in Siberia? In this acclaimed book, newly available in paperback, Michael Benton assembles all the evidence and gives his verdict.

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"Tells the story of how people--from Victorian times to the present--have wrested meaning from old rocks, bones, and shells. He tells us of rivalries and squabbles, and paints a vivid picture of science as a quintessentially human endeavor--an ongoing search for better understanding that by its very nature can never be finished."