Postcranial remains of Baphetes and their bearing on the relationships of the Baphetidae (= Loxommatidae)

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Abstract

The first unequivocal postcranial remains of baphetids (= loxommatids) associated with skull roof and lower jaw material are reported from a specimen of Baphetes from the English Upper Carboniferous, Duckmantian. Characters of the mandible, including the incorporation in the symphysis of paired parasymphysial plates, permit the identification of a previously indeterminate jaw from the Langsettian (Westphalian A) of Nova Scotia, as baphetid. The postcranial remains include vertebrae, pectoral and pelvic limb and limb girdle elements that present a combination of unique characters extending the diagnosis of the family Baphetidae, together with plesiomophic and derived characters which suggest that baphetids are primitive stem group tetrapods.

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