Veryhachium Deunff 1954, originally described from the Ordovician of western France, is one of the most frequently recorded acritarch genera. Over 250 species and subspecies, from the Cambrian to the Neogene, have been attributed to the genus. This genus has a simple morphology; it displays a triangular, rectangular, or polygonal central vesicle, with a few, simple processes drawn out from the angles of the vesicle in a single plane, and sometimes with supplementary or auxillary processes arising from the vesicle body. Veryhachium has been emended and revised numerous times. The number of valid species is excessive: most are probably synonyms. To facilitate effective classification, only a few morphological categories should be retained. For the Lower Paleozoic, the use of two informal groups is proposed. These are the Veryhachium trispinosum group for triangular specimens, and the Veryhachium lairdii group for rectangular forms. Although generally abundant and widespread throughout the Phanerozoic, Veryhachium is of limited biostratigraphic, paleoecologic, or paleogeo-graphic value. However, its First Appearance Datum (FAD) is of great importance for Ordovician stratigraphy; the first Veryhachium morphotypes appear in the Tremadocian Stage, making the genus an important biostratigraphic marker.
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Vol. 31 • No. 1