Dinosaurs are a reptilian class that emerged in the late Triassic period (about 230 million years ago). They were a ridiculously varied group of animals, that spread over pre-continental-break Earth. There were two main orders of dinosaur -Ornithschia and Saurischia. Specifically, we will be talking about a suborder of the latter, Theropoda, but more on that further on!
Although often thought of as gigantic, most dinosaurs were human-sized or smaller. Although dinosaur fossils have been found for millennia. In China, they were thought to be the bones of dragons, used then and now as traditional medicine, and in Christian Europe, they were thought to be giants or creatures killed in the great flood. (Nice one guys)
An English geology proffessor by the name of William Buckland collected fossilised Megalosaurus bones and, between 1814 and 1824, was the first to write about dinosaurs in a scientific journal. This sparked off what I like to refer to as "Jurassic Park Mania: First Edition".
As a kid, I fucking loved dinosaurs. I could tell you the taxonomy (for those non-sciency enclined, that's the funny bit that says what the animal's other-animal cousins are) of up to a hundred different dinosaurs. My favourite kind of dinosaur?