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Romer, Alfred Sherwood: (1894-1973), director of the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard University until his retirement in 1961, was one the singularly most influential vertebrate paleontologists of the 20th Century. His work ranged over virtually every conceivable subject within that field, although it was the osteology and taxonomy of the therapsids and other proto-mammals which was nearest his heart. In addition to this work, Romer was acutely interested in the origin and initial adaptive radiation of tetrapods, and his work became the basis for a theory of tetrapod origins which was canon until the description of Acanthostega gunnari by Clack & Coates in the 1990s. Romer was ahead of his time in his defense of monophyly of Dinosauria (1966) (though he did feel that Theropoda was not ancestral to birds). Perhaps Romer's most notable gift to scientific posterity, were his three seminal publications: Osteology of the Reptiles (1956), Vertebrate Paleontology (1966), and The Vertebrate Body (1977)--immortal tomes which still adorn the shelves of any self-respecting student of vertebrate paleontology and evolution. See Bakker (1986) for a particularly heartfelt tribute to the Dean of vertebrate paleontology. (EvoWiki)

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