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Vanished Ocean: How Tethys Reshaped the World

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Vanished Ocean: How Tethys Reshaped the World [Paperback]

Dorrik Stow
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Stow, a U.K. geologist and oceanographer, has for decades been gathering evidence from around the world to show what the earth looked like 260 million years ago when the continents had fused into one supercontinent, which scientists call Pangaea, with an enormous C-shaped ocean--now lost--named Tethys (after the Greek sea goddess). Destroyed only five and a half million years ago by the movement of continents, Tethys straddled the equator and formed Pangaea's eastern shore. Tethys was responsible for laying down many of our current oil deposits, not only in the Mideast but also off West Africa and eastern South America. Stow links the two most famous widespread extinctions to Tethys, claiming that the massive Permian extinction was caused in large part by Pangaea fusing together, accompanied by a dramatic fall in sea levels. Stow is not impressed by the widely accepted theory that an asteroid killed off the dinosaurs; he maintains that gradual changes in Tethys and other oceans at the time played an important role. Stow's level of geological detail will allow hard-core science buffs to get into his re-creation of a lost world. 15 maps and line drawings.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

An enormous length of geologic history—250 million years—unrolls in Stow’s intriguing biography of the Tethys Ocean. An artifact of the earth’s ceaseless plate tectonics, the Tethys formed from the supercontinent Pangea and then widened as Pangea rifted and new continents drifted to their present positions, in the process becoming extinguished by the collisions of India, Arabia, and Africa with Europe and Asia. Stow further describes how the ancient sea testifies to two of the most significant extinction events in evolutionary history (the Permian-Triassic event 245 million years ago and the Cretaceous-Tertiary event 65 million years ago) in rock strata and fossils. These Stow has seen over his globe-girdling career in geology; by expressing how sites look today, and imaging how they looked when formed, Stow creates contrasts compelling for anyone with a general interest in geology. Readers will be enthralled by creatures that evolved in the Tethys (whales, for example) or modern vistas that were once its floor (Mount Everest and the cliffs of Dover), making Stow a positive recruit to circulating science collections. --Gilbert Taylor --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.


Review from previous edition: "Vanished Ocean is an ideal book for those who are already widely read in natural science. It should appeal strongly to legions of former science students who, having since made their way in the world as accountants and personnel managers, hanker for the interest ad excitement of a life they once glimpsed but were unable to grasp." --Ted Nield, Literary Review 01.07.10

"Vanished Ocean is an ideal general reader for students and those who are already widely read in natural science." --Ted Nield, Geoscientist 01/08/2010 is an ideal general reader

"A wealth of nourishing knowledge revealed through the history of Tethyan Realm." --Ted Nield, Geoscientist 01.08.10

"Vanished Ocean is an ideal book for those who are already widely read in natural science." --Ted Nield, Literary Review 01/07/2010

"A well argued contribution to one of the great scientific debates of the last 30 years." --Jonathan Beard, New Scientist 29/05/2010

About the Author

Dorrik Stow is ECOSSE Chair of the Institute of Petroleum Engineering at Heriot-Watt University, in Edinburgh.
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