A new genus, Taraschelon, is proposed here for the largest tortoise known in the European Paleogene record. Its type and only known species, ‘Testudo’ gigas, was described in the first half of the 19th century. It comes from the French locality of Bournoncle-Saint-Pierre, in Auvergne (Haute-Loire). Extremely limited and partially incorrect information about this species has hitherto been available. Detailed study confirms the validity of this species and for the first time allows for a diagnosis. Taraschelon is the first genus of tortoise identified in the European Oligocene record, and one of the few genera known from the Paleogene of this continent. Comparison of Taraschelon with other primitive European forms shows an important diversity of Testudinidae in the Paleogene of this continent.
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