Reconstruction of the Late Eocene Barytherium grave, from here.

Belongs within: Tethytheria.
Contains: Deinotheriidae, Elephantida.

The Proboscidea include the elephants and their fossil relatives. The earliest proboscideans are known from the early Eocene, and were superficially tapir-like animals.

Characters (from Tassy & Shoshani 1988): Orbitotemporal fossa without processus ascendens of palatine; jugal reduced anteriorly, orbit opening in maxilla; jugal lengthened posteriorly to rear border of glenoid fossa of squamosal; condyloid foramen absent; optic foramen and fissura sphenorbitale on same line under crista orbitotemporalis of orbitotemporal fossa. Metacone on P4; upper molars with paracone and metacone transversely thickened and subdivided, paraconule touching precingulum, protocone with postprotocone crest; M1-2 with distocrista; lower molars with metaconid and entoconid transversely thickened, hypolophid as high as protolophid, hypoconulid developed labially, postentoconulid outlined. Astragalus with enlarged lateral calcaneal facet and protruding tuberculum mediale.

    |--Minchenella grandis TS88
    |--Anthracobunidae TS88
    |    |--Ishatherium BDR85
    |    |--Anthracobune [incl. Pilgrimella] TS88
    |    `--Jozaria TS88
    `--+--Moeritherium Andrews 1901 TS88, CB78 [Moeritheriidae, Moeritherioidea]
       |    |--M. lyonsi Andrews 1901 [incl. M. ancestrale Petronievics 1923, M. gracile Andrews 1902] CB78
       |    `--M. trigodon Andrews 1904 [incl. M. andrewsi Schlosser 1911] CB78
       |--Barytherioidea [Barypoda] TS88
       |    |--Phosphatherium SKR04
       |    |--Daouitherium SKR04
       |    |--Numidotherium koholense SKR04, TS88
       |    `--Barytherium Andrews 1901 [Barytheriidae] H78
       |         `--*B. grave Andrews 1901 H78
       `--+--Deinotheriidae TS88
          `--Elephantiformes [Palaeomastodontidae] SKR04
               |--Palaeomastodon Andrews 1901 SW06, CM78
               |    `--*P. beadnelli Andrews 1901 (see below for synonymy) CM78
               `--+--Phiomia Andrews & Beadnell 1902 SW06, SKR04 [Phiomiidae]
                  |    |--P. major Sanders, Kappelman & Rasmussen 2004 SKR04
                  |    |--P. minor (Andrews 1904) S68
                  |    |--P. serridens Andrews & Beadnell 1902 (see below for synonymy) CM78
                  |    `--P. wintoni (Andrews 1905) S68
                  `--Elephantimorpha SW06
                       |  i. s.: Notelephas Owen 1882 LA02
                       |           `--*N. australis Owen 1882 LA02
                       |--Hemimastodon crepusculi TS88
                       |--Eritreum Shoshani, Walter et al. 2006 SW06
                       |    `--*E. melakeghebrekristosi Shoshani, Walter et al. 2006 SW06
                       `--+--Elephantida SW06
                          `--Mammutidae [Mammutida, Mammutoidea] SW06
                               |--Eozygodon morotoensis SW06
                               |--Miomastodon TS88
                               |--Pliomastodon TS88
                               |--Zygolophodon Vacek 1877 SW06, CM78
                               |    |  i. s.: Z. aegyptensis SW06
                               |    |         Z. gobiensis SW06
                               |    |         Z. metachinjiensis SW06
                               |    |         Z. turicensis SW06
                               |    `--Z. (Zygolophodon) CM78
                               |         |--*Z. (Z.) tapiroides CM78
                               |         `--Z. (Z.) borsoni (Hays 1834) [=Mastodon borsoni] CM78
                               `--Mammut TS88 [incl. Mastodon Cuvier 1806 CM78]
                                    |--M. americanus FP64
                                    |--‘Mastodon’ andium C76
                                    |--‘Mastodon’ australis Owen 1844 LA02
                                    |--‘Mastodon’ chapmanii C76
                                    |--‘Mastodon’ humboldtii C76
                                    |--‘Mastodon’ obscurus C76
                                    |--‘Mastodon’ ohioticus C76
                                    |--‘Mastodon’ proavus C76
                                    |--‘Mastodon’ productus Cope 1874 C76
                                    |--‘Mastodon’ shepardii C76
                                    `--‘Mastodon’ tapiroides C76

*Palaeomastodon beadnelli Andrews 1901 [incl. P. barroisi Pontier 1907, P. intermedius Matsumoto 1922, P. minor Andrews 1904, P. minus Andrews 1905, P. parvus Andrews 1905, P. wintoni Andrews 1905]

Phiomia serridens Andrews & Beadnell 1902 [=Palaeomastodon (Phiomia) serridens; incl. Ph. osborni Matsumoto 1924] CM78

*Type species of generic name indicated


[BDR85] Barnes, L. G., D. P. Domning & C. E. Ray. 1985. Status of studies on fossil marine mammals. Marine Mammal Science 1 (1): 15-53.

[C76] Cope, E. D. 1876. Report upon the extinct Vertebrata obtained in New Mexico by parties of the expedition of 1874. Geographical Surveys West of the One Hundredth Meridian 4(2): i-iv, 1-370.

[CB78] Coppens, Y., & M. Beden 1978. Moeritherioidea. In Evolution of African Mammals (V. J. Maglio & H. B. S. Cooke, eds) pp. 333-335. Harvard University Press: Cambridge (Massachusetts).

[CM78] Coppens, Y., V. J. Maglio, C. T. Madden & M. Beden. 1978. Proboscidea. In Evolution of African Mammals (V. J. Maglio & H. B. S. Cooke, eds) pp. 336-367. Harvard University Press: Cambridge (Massachusetts).

[F64] Fisher, J., & R. T. Peterson. 1964. The World of Birds: A comprehensive guide to general ornithology. Macdonald: London.

[H78] Harris, J. M. 1978. Deinotherioidea and Barytherioidea. In Evolution of African Mammals (V. J. Maglio & H. B. S. Cooke, eds) pp. 315-332. Harvard University Press: Cambridge (Massachusetts).

[LA02] Long, J., M. Archer, T. Flannery & S. Hand. 2002. Prehistoric Mammals of Australia and New Guinea: One Hundred Million Years of Evolution. University of New South Wales Press: Sydney.

[SKR04] Sanders, W. J., J. Kappelman & D. T. Rasmussen. 2004. New large-bodied mammals from the late Oligocene site of Chilga, Ethiopia. Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 49 (3): 365-392.

[SW06] Shoshani, J., R. C. Walter, M. Abraha, S. Berhe, P. Tassy, W. J. Sanders, G. H. Marchant, Y. Libsekal, T. Ghirmai & D. Zinner. 2006. A proboscidean from the late Oligocene of Eritrea, a "missing link" between early Elephantiformes and Elephantimorpha, and biogeographical implications. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA 103 (46): 17296-17301.

[S68] Simons, E. L. 1968. African Oligocene mammals: introduction, history of study, and faunal succession. Peabody Museum of Natural History, Yale University, Bulletin 28: 1-21.

[TS88] Tassy, P., & J. Shoshani. 1988. The Tethytheria: elephants and their relatives. In The Phylogeny and Classification of the Tetrapods, vol. 2. Mammals (M. J. Benton, ed.) pp. 283-315. Clarendon Press: Oxford.

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