Trilobites of the Jince Formation, Czech Republic
Locality: Litavka River valley, Central Bohemia, Czech Republic
Jince Formation (numerous biozones)
Age: Middle Cambrian ca 505 - 510 Mya

The terrain of Skryje over the river Berounka near Jince, Czech Republic - courtesy Ton Agterbos

In the central Czech Republic, in a relatively small area of a few hundred square miles, is an incredibly rich assemblage of Cambrian to Devonian fossil lagerstätten. They are referred to as the Barrandian fossil assemblage, because it was french scientist Joachim Barrande (1799 - 1883) who spent much of his life in the Czech Republic, then called Bohemia. He named and described hundreds of fossil species in over four decades of devoted work there. The trilobites and other paleozoic life of Bohemia was compiled by Barrande in a huge and world-renowned work, Systeme Silurien du Centre de la Boheme, which deeply influenced the development of paleontology, and which was cited by contemporary Charles Darwin (1859).

The people of Jince recognize the significance of trilobites and this is reflected in the official crest of Jince (left).

Location of the Jince lagerstatte today
Locality of the JInce during the Middle Cambrian

Biostratigraphy of the Jince Formation:
As seen above, the location of Jince during the Cambrian was not tropical, but cold temperate. This demonstrates that the ecology of trilobites included marine habitats at all latitudes during the Paleozoic. A summary of the succession of strata in the Jince Formation reveals both richly fossiliferous zones interspresed with zones largely lacking fossils. The changes in the benthic assemblages reflect changing conditions, varying from relatively stable, thick marine sediments to evidence of recession and brackish environments. In fact, it is argued that the very low diversity assemblage dominated by Ellipsocephalus hoffi corresponds to the initial phase in recession of the Pribram-Jince Basin.

The Jince Formation is the most fossiliferous Cambrian unit in the Barrandian. It occurs in two areas with Cambrian sedimentary rocks - Jince area (also called Brdy area) and the Skryje-Tyrovice area. The vast majority of Cambrian trilobites occur in the Jince Formation. The Eccaparadoxides pusillus zone is the oldest zone of Jince Fm. (Middle Middle Cambrian), and is limited to the Skryje-Tyrovice Basin.  The other (Pribram-Jince Basin) contains a complete Middle Cambrian section, including several biozones: Paradoxides gracilis zone, Hydrocephalus lyelli zone, Onymagnostus hybridus zone, Ornamentaspis – Conocoryphe zone, and Rejkocephalus lyelli zone. Sediments in these basins were spasmodically deposited and commonly exhibit turbidity flow characteristics.
Although the Bohemian trilobite fauna spans from Cambrian to Devonian, the Middle Cambrian trilobites at Jince (sometimes spelled Ginetz in older collections) include the prominent orders of that time: Agnostida, Ptychopariida, and Redlichiida. Perhaps the most common of these is Ellipsocephalus hoffi, often found as crowded, monospecific assemblages. The eight trilobites depicted below are among the most commonly encountered at Jince.

Ellipsocephalus hoffi
(Schlotheim 1823)
Family Ellipsocephalidae
Agraulos ceticephalus
(Barrande 1846)
Family Agraulidae
Paradoxides gracilis
(Boeck 1827)
Family Paradoxididae
Hydrocephalus minor
(Boeck 1827)
Family Paradoxididae
Conocoryphe sulzeri
(Schlotheim 1823)
Family Conocoryphidae
Conocoryphe cirina
(Barrande 1846)
Family Conocoryphidae
Ptychoparia striata
(Emmrich 1839)
Family Ptychopariidae
Sao hirsuta
(Barrande 1863)
Family Solenopleuridae


Order Redichiida
 Suborder Redlichiina
  Superfamily Paradoxidoidea
   Family Paradoxididae
Acadoparadoxides sacheri (Barrande 1852)
Acadoparadoxides sirokyi Snajdr 1986
Eccaparadoxides opanol
Eccaparadoxides pusillus (Barrande 1846)
Eccaparadoxides rohanovicus Snajdr
Hydrocephalus minor (Boeck 1827)
Hydrocephalus carens Barrande 1846
Hydrocephalus (=Rejkocephalus) lyelli (Barrande 1852)
Hydrocephalus (=Rejkocephalus) rotundatus (Barrande1846)
Paradoxides gracilis
(Boeck 1827)
   Family Centropleuridae
Luhops expectans (Barrande 1852)

Order Ptychopariida
 Suborder Ptychopariina
  Superfamily Ptychoparioidea
   Family Conocoryphidae
Bailiela aff. aequalis (Linnarson 1883)
Conocoryphe gerlinda Snajdr 1982
Conocoryphe punctata ()
Conocoryphe sulzeri (Schlotheim 1823)
Conocoryphe sulzeri atlanta
Conocoryphe sulzeri cirina
Conocoryphe sulzeri sulzeri
Conocoryphe sulzeri tetralina
Ctenocephalus coronatus (Barrande 1846)
Conokephalina (=
Lobocephalina) emmrichi (Barrande 1846)
Parabailiella granulata (Hawle & Corda)
   Family Ptychopariidae
Ptychoparia mutica (Hawle & Corda)
Ptychoparia striata (Emmrich 1839)
   Family Solenopleuridae
Herse (=Solenopleurina) tyrovicensis (Ruzicka 1938)
Jincella prantli
(Ruzicka 1946)
Perneraspis conifrons (Pompeckj.)
Sao hirsuta Barrande 1846
  Superfamily Ellipsocephaloidea
   Family Ellipsocephalidae
Acadolenus snajdri
Ellipsocephalus hoffi Schlotheim 1823
Ellipsocephalus vetustus (Pompeckj)
Germaropyge germari Barrande 1852
?Kingaspis sp.
Ornamentaspis sp.
   Family Agraulidae
Agraulos ceticephalus (Barrande 1846)
Litavkaspis rejkovicensis Snajdr
Skreiaspis spinosa (Jahn 1895)

Order Agnostida
 Suborder Eodiscina
  Superfamily Eodiscoidea
   Family Eodiscidae
Dawsonia bohemica (Šnajdr 1950)
 Suborder Agnostina
  Superfamily Condylopygoidea
   Family Condylopygidae
Condylopyge rex (Barrande 1846)
Pleuroctenium granulatum (Barrande 1846)
  Superfamily Agnostoidea
   Family Doryagnostidae
Doryagnostus sp
   Family Metagnostidae
Trinodus tardus (Barrande 1846)
   Family Peronopsidae
Hypagnostus fatkai ()
 Hypagnostus jincensis ()
Hypagnostus umbonatus ()
Peronopsis cuneifera (Barrande 1846)
Peronopsis integra (Beyrich 1845)
   Family Phalagnostidae
Phalagnostus nudus (Beyrich 1845)
Phalagnostus prantli Snajdr
Phalagnostus preloban ()
   Family Ptychagnostidae
Onymagnostus hybridus (Brögger)
Tomagnostus sp.
   Family Spinagnostidae
Diplorrhina cuneifera ()
Diplorrhina redita ()
Diplorrhina robisoni ()
Diplorrhina triplicata
   Family Uncertain
Skryjagnostus sp.
  Superfamily Uncertain
   Family Phalacromidae
Phalacroma bibullatum (Barrande 1846)

For more information, see:

Barrande, J. 1852. Systeme Silurien du Centre de la Boheme. I. Recherches Palaeontologique, vol. 1 (Crustaces: Trilobite). Prague & Paris xxx + 935 pp. 51 pl. (Reissued as a facsimile edition by Goldschneck-Verlag, Postfach 1265, D-71399 Korb.

Chlupac, I., V. Havlicek, J. Kriz, Z. Kukal & P. Storch. 1999. Palaeozoic of the Barrandian (Cambrian to Devonian). 183 pp., 68 pl. Czech Geological Survey, Klarov 3, 118 21 Praha 1, Czech Republic.

Ludvigsen, R. 1999. The Trilobite Papers 11. A special issue in celebration of the bicentennial of the birth of Joachim Barrande 1799 - 1883. Privately published and distributed by Rolf Ludvigsen.

Snajdr, M. 1958. Trilobiti ceského stredního kambria [The Trilobites of the Middle Cambrian of Bohemia]. - Nakl. cesk. Akad. Véd, Rozpr. Ust. úst. geol., 24: 1-236 [Czech], 237-280 [English].

Šnajdr, M., 1990. Bohemian trilobites. 265 pp. Geological Survey, Prague.

Online Gallery of Jince Trilobites (

Back to trilobite localities
Could someone please take my order?
Walking Trilobite animation ©2000 by S. M. Gon III
last revised 15 March 2010 by S.M. Gon III