Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Purgatorius Van Valen And Sloan, 1965

Genus of archaic mammal from the early Paleocene of North America consisting of three species. Dental formula: 3.1.4.3. This genus is problematic and has moved in and out of several primate families; currently, most workers recognize it as incertae sedis and it has been moved out of the primates belonging to either the order Proprimates or Plesiadapiformes, depending on author. It is only known from a single tooth for one species (P. ceratops) and jaws and teeth for the other species (P. uncio, P. titusi). Body size is estimated to range between 60 and 90 g. Although its affinities are uncertain, there is nothing that pre-cludes it as a primate ancestor.

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