The Student’s Elements of Geology

Author: Charles Lyell

Lower Miocene Beds of Croatia.

The Brown Coal of Radaboj, near Angram in Croatia, not far from the borders of Styria, is covered, says Von Buch, by beds containing the marine shells of the Vienna basin, or, in other words, by Upper Miocene or Falunian strata. They appear to correspond in age to the Mayence basin, or to the Rupelian strata of Belgium. They have yielded more than 200 species of fossil plants, described by the late Professor Unger. These plants are well preserved in a hard marlstone, and contain several palms; among them the Sabal, Figure 151, and another genus allied to the date-palm Phoenicites spectabilis. The only abundant plant among the Radaboj fossils which is characteristic of the Upper Miocene period is the Populus mutabilis, whereas no less than fifty of the Radaboj species are common to the more ancient flora of the Lower Molasse of Switzerland.

The insect fauna is very rich, and, like the plants, indicates a more tropical climate than do the fossils of Oeningen presently to be mentioned. There are ten species of Termites, or white ants, some of gigantic size, and large dragonflies with speckled wings, like those of the Southern States in North America; there are also grasshoppers of considerable size, and even the Lepidoptera are not unrepresented. In one instance, the pattern of a butterfly’s wing has escaped obliteration in the marl-stone of Radaboj; and when we reflect on the remoteness of the time from which it has been faithfully transmitted to us, this fact may inspire the reader with some confidence as to the reliable nature of the characters which other insects of a more durable texture, such as the beetles, may afford for specific determination. The Vanessa above figured retains, says Heer, some of its colours, and corresponds with Vanessa Hadena of India.

Professor Beyrich has made known to us the existence of a long succession of marine strata in North Germany, which lead by an almost gradual transition from beds of Upper Miocene age to others of the age of the base of the Lower Miocene. Although some of the German lignites called Brown Coal belong to the upper parts of this series, the most important of them are of Lower Miocene date, as, for example, those of the Siebengebirge, near Bonn, which are associated with volcanic rocks.

Professor Beyrich confines the term "Miocene" to those strata which agree in age with the faluns of Touraine, and he has proposed the term "Oligocene" for those older formations called Lower Miocene in this work.


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Chicago: Charles Lyell, "Lower Miocene Beds of Croatia.," The Student’s Elements of Geology, ed. Bryant Conant, James and trans. Babington, B. G. (Benjamin Guy), 1794-1866 in The Student’s Elements of Geology Original Sources, accessed October 3, 2022,

MLA: Lyell, Charles. "Lower Miocene Beds of Croatia." The Student’s Elements of Geology, edited by Bryant Conant, James, and translated by Babington, B. G. (Benjamin Guy), 1794-1866, in The Student’s Elements of Geology, Original Sources. 3 Oct. 2022.

Harvard: Lyell, C, 'Lower Miocene Beds of Croatia.' in The Student’s Elements of Geology, ed. and trans. . cited in , The Student’s Elements of Geology. Original Sources, retrieved 3 October 2022, from