1902 Encyclopedia > Ape > Apes Classified by Family, Sub-Family and Genera

(Part 2)


(B) Apes Classified by Family, Sub-Family and Genera

The Ape: Families, Sub-Families and Genera

Apart then from man, the apes constitute the first suborder of that which is the most man-like order of the class Mammalia (beasts), and which bears the name "Primates."

Such being the position of apes as a whole, they are zootomically divisible into a number of more and more subordinate groups, termed respectively families, sub-families, and genera.

The following table exhibits what is believed to be, on the whole, the most natural and convenient arrangement of these groups of apes:--


Sub-Family 1: Simiinae

- Simia.
- Troglodytes.
- Hylobates.

Sub-Family 2: Semnopithecinae
- Semnopithecus
- Colobus

Sub-Family 3: Cynopithecinae
- Cercopithecus
- Macacus

- Cynocephalus


Sub-Family 1: Cebinae

- Ateles
- Eriodes
- Lagothrix
- Cebus

Sub-Family 2: Mycetinae

- Mycetes

Sub-Family 3: Pitheciinae

- Pithecia
- Brachyurus

Sub-Family 4: Nyctipithecinae

- Nyctipithecus
- Chrysothrix
- Callithrix

Sub-Family 5: Hapalinae

- Hapale
- Midas

The limits of the present article exclude altogether from consideration the half-apes or Lemurs.

The whole of the apes may be characterized by the following zoological definition, the meaning of the term of which will be explained later:--

Unguiculate, claviculate mammals, with a deciduate, discoidal placente and small allantois; with orbits enrircled by and separated off from the temporal fosscoe by plates of bone; lachrymal foramen not opening on the cheek; posterior cornua of os hyoids longer than the anterior cornua; dental formula as in man, save that a true molar may be wanting, or that there may be a premolar in excess, or both; brain with well-developed posterior cornua and with the cerebellum quite covered by the cerebrum, or only very slightly uncovered; hallux opposable, with a flat nail or none; a well-developed coecum; penis pendulous; testes acrotal; only two mammoe, which two are pectoral; uterus not two horned; thumb sometimes rudimentary or absent.

The great group of apes thus characterized is divisible, as the foregoing table indicates, into two great families, which are sharply distinguished by geographical distribution as well as by structural differences. The first of these families, SIMIADAE, is strictly confined to the warmer latitudes of the Old World. The second family, CEBIDAE, is as strictly confined to those of the New World.

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Ape - Table of Contents

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