Classification: ntax_cenozoic -> Holococcoliths -> fossil holococcoliths -> Lanternithus
Sister taxa: Clathrolithus, Corannulus, Daktylethra, Holodiscolithus, Lanternithus, Multipartis, Octolithus, Orthozygus, Quadrilateris, Semihololithus, Varolia, Youngilithus, Zygrhablithus, Unidentified fossil holococcoliths

Daughter taxa (time control age-window is: 0-800Ma)
Lanternithus arcanus
Medium sized holococcolith comprising several distinct crystallographic blocks that change appearance on rotation in XPL. At 0° six blocks are visible, four major quadrants, alternating dark and light, delineated by axial sutures, and one small block at each end. At 5° the four quadrants are bright and a small pore is visible in the centre. At 45° the coccolith is bright and crossed by diagonal extinction lines.
Lanternithus duocavus
Small holococccolith with small blocks at either end and two relatively large longitundinal central area holes.
Lanternithus jawzii
Similar to L. duocavus but without perforations in the plates
Lanternithus minutus
Rectangular holococcoliths with distinct lateral and end rim blocks and a large central pore. In side view it has a box-like appearance that tapers slightly to one end where it is capped by a cover.
Lanternithus procerus
Medium to large sized holococcolith seen in side view and comprising a basal coccolith formed from two plates, the upper of which extends distally to form a tall process that tapers to a termination capped by a distal cover. The spine is taller than the maximum width of the coccolith.
Lanternithus simplex
Medium sized holococcolith comprising several distinct crystallographic blocks. At 0° four blocks are visible, four major quadrants demarcated by dark extinction lines. There is a small pore visible at the centre of the coccolith.
Lanternithus unicavus
Small, elliptical holococcoliths with two small blocks at either end of the lith and a circular central hole or depression, which is dark in XPL. In XPL, the blocks are relatively dark when the coccolith is orientated at 0° and brightest at 45°.
Munarinus emrei
Small holoccolith with 4-6 rim blocks surrounding a central block
Lanternithus sp.
Specimens which cannot be assigned to any established species


Citation: Lanternithus Stradner, 1962
Rank: Genus
Type species: Lanternithus minutus Stradner, 1962
Taxonomic discussion: Similar species are placed in he genus Munarinus in the Cretaceous

Distinguishing features: Cavate holoccoliths with distinct crystallographic blocks.

Farinacci & Howe catalog pages: Lanternithus *

Search data:
TagsLITHS: holococcolith, elliptical, hollow, CROSS-POLARS: R-prominent,
MetricsLith size: 3->7µm; Segments: 5->7;
The morphological data given here can be used on the advanced search page. See also these notes

Geological Range:
Last occurrence (top): in upper part of Rupelian Stage (74% up, 29.6Ma, in Rupelian stage). Data source: Total of range of species in this database
First occurrence (base): at base of Danian Stage (0% up, 66Ma, in Danian stage). Data source: Total of range of species in this database

Plot of occurrence data:


Perch-Nielsen, K. (1985a). Cenozoic calcareous nannofossils. In, Bolli, H. M., Saunders, J. B. & Perch-Nielsen, K. (eds) Plankton Stratigraphy. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 427-555. gs

Stradner, H. (1962). Über neue und wenig bekannte Nannofossilien aus Kreide und Alttertiär. Verhandlungen der Geologischen Bundesanstalt (Wien). 2: 363-377. gs V O


Lanternithus compiled by Jeremy R. Young, Paul R. Bown, Jacqueline A. Lees viewed: 13-4-2021

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Short stable page link: Go to to create a permanent copy of this page - citation notes

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