The Age of Mammals Mural
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Painter: Rudolph F. Zallinger

Date: 1961 to 1967

Technique: Renaissance fresco secco

Time Period: Paleocene Epoch (66 million years ago) to Pleistocene Epoch (8,000 years ago)

Dimensions: About 60 feet (18.3 meters) by 5.5 feet (1.7 meters)

The Age of Mammals
mural in the Peabody Museum of Natural History, at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, is a unique representation of the evolution of plants, animals and landscapes in western North America over the last 66 million years. The mural resulted from a commission by Life magazine for its series The World We Live In. It occupies the south wall of the Hall of Mammalian Evolution at the Museum. Reading from left to right, the painting presents a single panorama of life on land beginning shortly after the extinction of the dinosaurs and ending with the giant animals of the Ice Age. Emphasizing mammals and angiosperms—the flowering plants—the mural portrays the prehistoric animals and plants with scientific accuracy in an idealized landscape, the result of the close collaboration of the artist with the most preeminent scientists of that day.

The Age of Mammals may not be reproduced in whole or in part in any form or media without the written permission of the Yale Peabody Museum. For information, contact

The Age of Mammals, a mural by Rudolph F. Zallinger. Copyright © 1966, 1975, 1989, 1991, 2000 Peabody Museum of Natural History, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, USA.