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Nummulus brattenburgensis and Crania craniolaris (Brachiopoda, Craniidae)

Keywords: Brachiopod , Crania , Isocrania , Danocrania , history , Sweden

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Abstract:

The Brattingsborg pennies are mentioned in medieval texts dating from the middle of the first millennium and many popular medieval legends refer to their occurrence on Iv Island in the Scania region (Sweden) as brattingsborgpenningar or in Latin as Nummulus brattenburgensis. Actually they are valves of the fossil brachiopod Crania craniolaris originally described by Linnaeus (1758) as Anomia craniolaris from the Upper Cretaceous. Later Retzius (1781) created the genus Crania based on these specimens from Iv Island and on another species he described under Crania (now Isocrania) egnabergensis from Ignaberga in the Scania region. The scientific history of those two species is reviewed along with that of Danocrania tuberculata (Nilsson, 1826), formerly figured as Craniolites brattenburgicus, from the Danian of Scania. Two legends about these "pennies" are included.

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