A large, carnivorous dinosaur
that lived in the late Jurassic
. Specimens have been found in North America
and East Africa
. The name means "horned lizard
of this genus
include the Ceratosaurus nasicornus
("nose-horned horned lizard," seems redundant), C. dentisulcatus, C. ingens
(originally considered a Megalosaurus
), C. magnicornis,
(also formerly Megalosaurus) and C. roechlingi.
Resembling the Allosaurus in size and general shape, the Ceratosaurus grew up to 6 meters long and weighed about a ton. It was a biped with bulky, powerful legs and tail, and underdeveloped arms. Its mouth was filled with large, very sharp teeth, and the top of its skull featured short, blade-shaped horns above the nose and eyes. Yes, it looked quite demonic.
The purpose of the horns is a matter of speculation. They may have been secondary sexual characteristic, used similarly to a deer's antlers, or possibly an aid for the young to hatch from their eggs.