OverviewIn 1850, William King (1809-86) published the first comprehensive study of fossils from the Permian following the establishment of the system by Murchison in 1841. The monograph is based mainly on King's own collections; the type and figured material now belongs to the James Mitchell Museum, National University of Ireland, Galway, where King was professor of geology and mineralogy for many years. Some 150 species, over one-third identified by King, are carefully described and beautifully illustrated. The fossil biota ranges from foraminiferans to plants and reptiles; but a key focus is the large fauna of fossil invertebrates, notably brachiopods and molluscs, from the Magnesian Limestone. The work includes detailed data on the distribution of the floras and faunas in counties Durham and Northumberland together with elsewhere in the Zechstein province. Data on the numbers of taxa and some notes on the significance of the Permian biota are also provided.