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    Description

    A SUPERB T. REX TOOTH
    Tyrannosaurus rex (Latin for "king tyrant lizard")
    Late Cretaceous (65-68 million years old)
    Hell Creek Formation, Harding County, South Dakota


    Tyrannosaurus rex was the largest, most powerful carnivorous dinosaur (aka theropod) of all time, and the largest land carnivore of any type in our Earth's history. It measured up to 43 feet in length and weighed up to 8 tons (16,000 lbs).
    Its massive skull measured up to 5 feet long and was lined with huge spike-like teeth that were more robust than the teeth of any other theropod (carnivorous dinosaur). Its skull was narrow in the front and extremely wide in the back, allowing for the eye sockets to point well forward and indicating the presence of excellent binocular vision, which would be necessary to solve time-distance problems required to effectively intercept its prey at running speed. Because the skull was so massive and heavy, T. rex needed a substantial counterbalance in the form of a long heavy tail. The neck was short and the neck muscles huge to support the gigantic skull and absorb the shock of impact during the very violent attacks that T. rex would initiate as it would slam into its prey, mouth first, at high speed. T. rex teeth were very robust so that they would more effectively transmit the energy of impact into the victim's body and gouge, rather than cut, huge chunks of flesh out of the prey as T. rex bore down with its powerful jaws. T. rex had the greatest biting force of any large theropod, so it appears that the great jaw strength was an evolutionary adaptation to its unique "gape-jawed" collision hunting style. The evidence clearly shows that Tyrannosaurus rex was truly the "King of Dinosaurs".

    This tooth is from the premaxillary region of the snout and has "d-shaped" cross section because of the specialized functions of these teeth from the very front of the skull. These teeth appear to have a more precise "nipper" function to allow fine cleaning of bones or the gentle manipulation of objects without damage, such as when moving its own eggs or young. Premaxillary teeth are very rare because there were only eight of these teeth in the entire skull out of over 60, so they comprise just 13% of all T. rex teeth. This beautiful tooth exhibits pristine, natural lustrous surfaces and a lovely banded chocolate-brown color. Exceptionally high quality with only 10% restoration to the base of the tooth, the enamel blade is absolutely perfect. Measures 2 1/2 inches long by a massive 1 1/2 inches across the base.


    Condition Report*: Condition report available upon request.
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    January, 2009
    18th Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,869

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