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The "Glory of..." Cone Shells

Four cone shells, because of their beauty and relative rarity have been considered the glory of where they are found. As well as the Glory of the Sea (Conus gloriamaris Chemnitz 1777) and the Glory of India (Conus milneedwardsi Jousseaume 1894), which are described on the previous page, two others comprise this group.

Conus granulatus (Glory of the Atlantic) was the first of the glorious cones to be described, its name deriving from the granulations of the body whorl. In 1758, Linnaeus remarked on its red and purple coloring in his Systema Naturae (10th ed.) but was mistaken in citing its locality as O. Africano. Considered rare even by 1825, it easily is the equal in price to any of the other shells pictured. The species occurs in the tropical waters of the western Atlantic, from south Florida to the West Indies. Although the shell can grow to approximately 61 mm, most specimens are less than 40 mm. The one illustrated is only 26 mm, although the color is quite vivid. The holotype is in the collection of the Linnean Society (London).

C. bengalensis (Glory of Bengal) was the last of these cones to be described, over two centuries later by Okutani in 1968. Similar to C. milneedwardsi but larger and with a lower spire, it is found in the Bay of Bengal (and the Red Sea) and ranges in size from 85-132 mm; the one illustrated is 111mm. The holotype had been trawled ten years earlier by a Japanese research vessel and now is in the Tokai Regional Fishery Research Laboratory (Tokyo).


References: Linnaeus: Systema naturae (1758), 10th ed. (p.716, no.274); "A New Cone from the Bay of Bengal, Darioconus bengalensis, n. sp." (1968) by Takashi Okutani, Venus, 26(3-4), 66-70; "Type Specimens and Identity of the Described Species of Conus.1: The Species Described by Linnaeus, 1758-1767" (1963) by Alan J. Kohn, Journal of the Linnean Society (Zoology), 44, 740-768; "A Historical Review of the Mollusks of Linnaeus. Part 2. The Class Cephalopoda and the Genera Conus and Cypraea of the Class Gastropoda" (1953) by Henry Dodge, Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History, 103(Art.1), 1-134.

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