Harun Yahya

What is a Fossil? (1/2)

crab, fossil

A crab fossil that lived between 38 and 23 million years ago.

In the broadest definition, a fossil is the remains of a living thing that lived long ago and that has survived down to the present day by being preserved under natural conditions. The fossils that come down to us are parts of an organism, or remains left behind when the living thing concerned was still alive (the latter are known as trace fossils.) They are formed when dead animals or plants are preserved before they completely decay and eventually become part of the earth's sedimentary rock. In order for fossilization to take place, the animal or plant concerned must be buried in a fairly rapid manner—generally by being covered in a layer of silt. This is generally followed by a chemical process, during which preservation is ensured by means of mineral changes that take place in the original tissues.

Fossils are the most important evidence of the details of prehistoric life. From various regions of the world, hundreds of millions of fossils have been obtained, and they provide a window into the history and structure of life on Earth. Millions of fossils indicate that species appeared suddenly, fully-formed and with their complex structures, and have undergone no changes in the millions of years since. This is significant proof that life was brought into existence out of nothing—in other words that it was created. Not a single fossil suggests that living things formed gradually, in other words that they evolved. The fossil specimens that evolutionists maintain as "intermediate fossils" are few in number, and the invalidity of these has been scientifically proven. At the same time, some of the specimens depicted as intermediate fossils have actually been revealed as fakes, demonstrating that Darwinists are in such a state of despair as to resort to fraud.

birch fossil, Paleocene, Montana

This birch fossil from the Paleocene period (65.5 to 55 million years ago) found in Montana is three-dimensional. (left)

There exists no difference between this frog, alive 50 million years ago, and those of today. (right)

For the last 150 years or so, fossils from excavations carried out all over the world prove that fish have always been fish, insects have always been insects, birds have always been birds and reptiles have always been reptiles. Not one single fossil has pointed to any transition between living species—in other words, from fish to amphibian or from reptile to bird. In short, the fossil record has definitively demolished the theory of evolution's basic claim, that species descended from one another by undergoing changes over long periods of time.

In addition to the information that fossils provide concerning life forms, they also supply significant data regarding the history of the planet, such as how the movements of continental plates have altered the surface of the Earth and what kind of climatic changes took place in past eras.

starfish, evolution, Shrimp, Fossils

Shrimp that lived 250 million and 70 million years ago are the same as those that live in our day. Shrimp that have remained unchanged for millions of years show that evolution has never occurred. (left)

A 490- to 443-million-year-old starfish reveals that starfish have remained the same for hundreds of millions of years and have not evolved. (right)

Fossils have attracted the interest of researchers ever since the days of ancient Greece, although their study as a distinct branch of science began only in the middle of the 17th century. This followed the works of the researcher Robert Hooke (author of Micrographia, 1665, and Discourse of Earthquakes, 1668) and Niels Stensen (better known as Nicolai Steno). At the time when Hooke and Steno carried out their investigations, most thinkers did not believe that fossils were actually the remains of living things that had existed in the past. At the heart of the debate over whether fossils were the actual remains of living things lay the inability to explain where fossils were discovered, in terms of geological data. Fossils were frequently found in mountainous regions, although at the time, it was impossible to account for how a fish, for example, could have been fossilized in a stratum of rock so high above sea level. Just as Leonardo da Vinci had previously suggested, Steno maintained that sea levels must have declined over the course of history. Hooke, on the other hand, said that mountains have been formed as the result of warming inside the Earth and earthquakes in the oceanic plates.

Fossils, amber, winged ant


Fossils trapped in amber by the hardening of resin also refute the theory of evolution.

trilobite fossil

Pictured are a trilobite that lived in the Ordovician period (490 to 443 million years ago) and a gastropod from the Silurian period (443 to 417 million years ago). From these fossils, we can guess that the rocks in question are around 448 to 442 million years old.

Following the accounts of Hooke and Steno, who explained that fossils were actually the remains of living things that had once lived in the past, geology developed during the 18th and 19th centuries, and systematic fossil collecting and research began turning into a branch of science. The principles that Steno had laid out were followed in the classification and interpretation of fossils. From the 18th century on, the development of mining and increased railway construction permitted greater, more detailed investigation of what lay below the ground surface.

Modern geology revealed that the Earth's crust consisted of enormous sections known as "plates," which moved across the surface of the globe, carrying the continents and forming the oceans. The greater the movement of the plates, the more changes in the Earth's geography. Mountain ranges were the result of the collisions between very large plates. Changes and upthrusts in the Earth's geography that took place over very long periods of time also showed that strata that today form portions of mountains were once under water.

In this way, fossils seen in rock strata emerged as one major means of obtaining information about the different periods of the Earth's history. Geological information showed that the remains of living things preserved after death in sediments—fossils, in other words—rose up in rock strata laid down over enormously long periods of time. Some of the rocks in which fossils were found dated back hundreds of millions of years.

fossil layers

1 - Generally following the death of a living organism, first the soft tissues become deformed and decay. Then later, hard parts such as bones and teeth are preserved. Burial should occur fairly rapidly to prevent deformation of the bones.

2 - After long periods of time, bones become buried under the lower layers of sediment and there, the remains of the living being become fossilized.

3 - As the land above is slowly eroded away, the rock layer in which the fossil formed starts to proceed towards the surface.

4 - The fossil approaching the surface either appears by itself or is found by paleontologists during their investigation.


A fossil researcher working at the Ediacara Formation in Australia.


Himalayas, tectonic plates, Euroasia, ocean, floor


historical, formation, Himalayas

Geological researches show that layers of the Earth move and mountains were formed as a result of the movements and collisions of large tectonic plates. In the drawing above, the historical formation of Himalayas is depicted. When the region of India started to move toward Euroasia approximately 145 million years ago, the ocean floor slipped under Euroasia.

Merging of India with Euroasia caused layers of ocean floor to be jammed between the two continents and in turn, become pushed upwards, resulting in the raising of today's Himalayas.

A) India,
B) Euroasia,
C) India,

D) Euroasia,
E) Sliding of oceans underneath lands,
F) India,

G) Sea layers,
H) Himalayas,
I) Pushing of layers upward caused by jamming


satellite, Earth, image
trilobite, Ordovician

(left) A satellite image of the Earth..

Fossils used to determine the formation dates of rocks are called index fossils. The majority of these species are ones that lived in only a particular period, that were widespread and easily recognizable


fossil, evolution

Darwinists claim that by undergoing minor changes, living beings evolve from one species to another over millions of years. According to this claim which is refuted by scientific findings, fish transformed into amphibians, and reptiles transformed into birds. This so-called transformation process, asserted to last for millions of years, should have left countless evidence in the fossil record. In other words, during their intense researches for the last hundred years, researchers should have uncovered many grotesque living beings such as half-fish half-lizard, half-spider half fly or half-lizard half-bird. However, although almost every stratum on Earth has been dug, not even a single fossil has been found that Darwinists can use as an evidence for their so-called transition. On the other hand, there are innumerable fossils showing that spiders were always spiders, flies were always flies, fish were always fish, crocodiles were always crocodiles, rabbits were always rabbits and birds were always birds. Hundreds of millions of fossils clearly show that living beings have not undergone evolution, but were created. Hundreds of millions of fossils prove that living beings did not evolve, but were created.

Fossil findings reveal that the imaginary beings in these drawings have never existed. Living beings appeared suddenly in fossil record, with all their features intact, and throughout their lives these species have undergone no changes whatsoever.


During these studies, it was observed that specific fossil species were found only in specific strata and certain types of rock. Consecutive rock strata were observed to contain their own fossil groups, which could be regarded as that particular layer's "signature." These "signature fossils" could vary, according to time, period, and area. For example, two different environmental conditions and kinds of sediments—an ancient lake bed and a coral reef, for example—might be encountered in the same fossil-bearing stratum belonging to the same geologic period. Alternatively, one might encounter the same fossil "signature" in two different rock beds many kilometers apart from one another. Through the information imparted by these remains, scientists determined the geological time frame that we still use today.


Chapters of the Book

Desktop View