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Glossopteris meaning "tongue" because the leaves are tongue-shaped, is the largest and best-known genus of an extinct Permian order of seed ferns. Species of Glossopteris were widespread over the supercontinent of Gondwana during the Permian epoch, where they formed the dominant component of high latitude polar forests. Glossopteris fossils were critical in recognizing former connections between the various fragments of Gondwana: South America, Africa, India, Australia, New Zealand, and Antarctica. The distribution of Glossopteris across several, now detached, landmasses led Eduard Suess, amongst others, to propose that the southern continents were once amalgamated into a single supercontinent—Pangea.
The last photo shows the original specimen.
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