The Triassic period

At the beginning was the sea…

Throughout the Triassic (the geological period 252–201 million years ago) the landmasses that existed were combined into the one large supercontinent of Pangaea, surrounded by a vast ocean called Panthalassa. At the equator, an arm of this ocean intruded deeply into the centre of Pangaea forming an ancient sea called the Tethys, which divided Pangaea into Gondwana in the south and Laurasia in the north.

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The lagoon of Monte San Giorgio

During the Middle Triassic (247–235 millions years ago) Monte San Giorgio was not the mountain we know today, but the bottom of a shallow sea located at the western margin of the Tethys. The environment was characterized by the presence of small islands and banks of fine sand. These separated the coast from the open sea, forming a lagoon or a more or less isolated basin.

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