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She Sells Sea Shells By The Sea Shore-Painting-Thom Ross-Sorrel Sky Gallery
She Sells Sea Shells By The Sea Shore-Painting-Thom Ross-Sorrel Sky Gallery
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She Sells Sea Shells By The Sea Shore

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Acrylic on Canvas , 48" x 96" Unframed and 49.5" x 97.5" Framed
Mary Anning (1799 - 1847) - Regarded as one of the most important women in English scientific history.

“For me, Mary Anning meets all the requirements of being a true and authentic hero. Her discoveries challenged both the male-dominated scientific societies and the mainstream religious beliefs of her time. She steadfastly clung to her beliefs based on her astounding discoveries and ended up re-writing the history of the entire world. She has been a hero of mine since I was 10 years old.” - Thom Ross

Now regarded as one of the most important women in English scientific history, Mary Anning was born into a poor family along the southern coast of England. She spent her childhood climbing the coastal cliffs of Dorset with her father, searching for fossilized sea shells and ancient sea creatures to sell to tourists. In those days, fossils were thought to be the remains of present-day creatures which fit the timeline of Biblical scholars. When Mary's father died, she continued her pursuit of fossils alongside her older brother. When she was 11 years old she discovered an enormous skull of what would become known as an "Ichthyosaurus," a marine creature that had a shape similar to the present-day porpoise. Several years later she discovered a plesiosaur ("near lizard").

Her discoveries brought ostracism as they contradicted the current scientific and Biblical understanding. Also, because she was a woman, she was never given credit for her findings; the credit would go to the men who wrote about her discoveries. She died in 1847 in relative obscurity, but the skeletons of the creatures she discovered can be found worldwide in museums. Her discoveries were so numerous and her thinking so ahead of its time, that she has become known as the Mother of Paleontology.

In 1908, a song was written which became the famous tongue-twister, "She Sells Seashells By the Sea Shore" which is said to be inspired by Mary Anning. In 2018, a large statue of Mary Anning was placed in her hometown of Dorset. In 2021, the Royal Mint released some commemorative coins called "The Mary Anning Collection" which were minted in acknowledgment of her lack of recognition as 'one of Britain's greatest fossil hunters.'