British palaeontologist Mary Anning is celebrated in today’s Google Doodle with a clever rock-based font.

Google is celebrating the 215th birthday of British palaeontologist Mary Anning in today’s Doodle.

Mary Anning became known after finding Jurassic marine fossil beds at Lyme Regis in Dorset on the Southwest coast of England.

Her career started pretty early in her life when she and her brother discovered the first ichthyosaur skeleton when she was just 12-years-old.

Mary Anning

The current Pterosaur exhibit at the American Museum of Natural History, also recognizes her as finding the first ‘flying dragon,’ a Pterosaur, outside of continental Europe.

This is particularly noteworthy because Pterosaurs have only recently been classified as a completely distinct species to dinosaurs.

Stone Age Beliefs Blocked Recognition In Her Own Era

Unfortunately, Anning’s gender and her working social class meant she was unable to be art of the scientific community in 19th century Britain because it comprised of upper-class Anglican men who were unforthcoming to a cabinet maker’s daughter joining their clique.

She was banned from joining the Geological Society of London and often, her contributions to science were attributed to better-known gentlemen in the geological society.

She only had one scientific writing published during her whole career – an extract of a letter to the Magazine of Natural History in 1839 which questioned one of the magazine’s claims.

Anning died in 1847 and like many historical greats, she only became famous after this, with Charles Dickens praising her work and in 2010, the the Royal Society naming her as one of the the ten British women who have most influenced the history of science.

Mary Anning Google Doodle

Today’s Google Doodle shows Anning exposing a fossil in a cliff, with the letters of ‘Google’ made up by rocks and the second ‘g’ a dinosaur fossil.

Google’s Doodle website not only displays where the doodle is on display, but also other doodles that have been released on this day in history. This year’s doodle continues a recent trend at Google of highlighting gender inequality and representing important contributions to society.

Previously, Google showed a doodle from 2009, which was the winner of a competition and designed by Christin Engelberth, a sixth grader at Bernard Harris Middle School in San Antonio, Texas.

2009 Google Doodle

In 2002, May 21st was celebrated with a Dilbert Google Doodle across the whole world and in the UK on that date in 2006, you saw a Sherlock Holmes Doodle to celebrate Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s 147th Birthday.

Sherlock Holmes Google Doodle

The Japanese Annular Eclipse was celebrated in 2012, while in 2010, one of our favorite Google Doodles of all time – the PacMan interactive game doodle appeared on this date.

PacMan Google Doodle

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