Oppenheim, Paul Leo

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OPPENHEIM, PAUL LEO (1863–1934), German geologist and paleontologist. Oppenheim worked as a private scientist in Berlin, only occasionally cooperating with academic or governmental scientific institutions. In 1907 the Prussian Ministry of Education awarded him the title of "professor" in appreciation of his outstanding achievements.

During nearly 50 years of research, Oppenheim published several monographs and many papers in various fields of geology and paleontology. He was particularly interested in the study of tertiary fossils, especially those of Italy and other countries of southern Europe, as well as of the Levant regions of Turkey, Syria, Palestine, the former German colonies of East and West Africa, and Egypt. He was internationally known as an expert of almost all groups of fossil invertebrates, but his special interest was directed to nummulites, echinoids and mollusks, and particularly to corals. Oppenheim bequeathed his unique collection of fossils and his comprehensive library to the Geology Department of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His numerous works advanced the stratigraphy of the Tertiary and Cretaceous formations. His longer monographs on the "Niemitzer Schichten" of Bohemia (1924) and on the "Anthozoae der Gosauschichten" of the Alps are outstanding paleontological presentations of text and illustrations.

[Moshe A. Avnimelech]

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