DIRECTOR   Jarl Vladimirescu


The great amount of information which has of late years been accumulated regarding the Geographical Distribution of Plants and Animals renders it very desirable that it should be classified and displayed, so that some general 4and connected view of the facts, and of their bearing on each other, may be obtained. To do this is the object of the present work. I shall to a certain extent follow the arrangement suggested by Schouw,* and adopted by Decandollef and others in regard to plants, and consider the subject under two aspects equivalent to those which in Zoology Van Der HoevenJ has recently proposed to distinguish respectively by the names of " Geographical Zoology " and " Zoological Geography," the former referring to the range of species, the latter to the Faunas of districts, and treat each great class separately and independently upon both these points. I shall commence with the former, and shall first pass the different families in each class under review, giving an account of their distribution, and affinities. Their history and that of their nearest relatives during past geological epochs is a most important point in relation to this, and to these I propose to give special attention ; and I shall endeavour, by the aid of maps, to exhibit the facts more clearly and comprehensively than I could otherwise do. On these maps the localities where the groups or species are found will be marked; and the districts where they are most fully or most feebly represented will, when necessary, be shown by different intensities of colour. To save expense, and so to allow of greater use being made of maps than would otherwise be the case, they have been drawn of three sizes, so that, when a mere general reference is required the smaller ones may be used, and the larger be reserved for those cases which require more detail. Where the distribution of a species or group is peculiar, any speculations which have been made as to its cause will be noticed. After a full inquiry into the Geographical Zoology of each class, I shall conclude its history with a summary of its Zoological Geography. The geographical distribution of each class will thus form an independent treatise by itself. While the work is mainly addressed to the scientific naturalist, it is also intended for the general reader; and with this view, scientific names will be avoided whenever there are English ones to express the meaning. For the same reason, in addition to displaying in correlative order the distribution of plants and animals throughout the globe, so that the facts may be analysed and reasoned on, I shall make it an object to supply general information regarding the habitats of those plants or animals as to which the educated reader is most likely to feel curiosity. References to authorities will be given whenever they seem likely to be useful. Every naturalist must have felt the want of such references when searching for information on any subject; and in the present case they are especially necessary, for the Zoologist is often unfamiliar with Botany, the Botanist with Zoology, and the specialist at sea when he gets beyond the limits of his own territory; and yet none of them can proceed far in their work without having frequent occasion to know something relating to the geographical distribution of other organized beings which incidentally come in connexion with the subject of their studies. I have endeavoured in my references to hit the medium between a burthensome display of erudition, and a selection too meagre to be of use.