Patterson and Rosen (1989: 23) summarized what little is known about fossil lophiiforms. The record extends back to the early Pliocene of Algeria (Lophius budegassa Arambourg), but better represented in the early Eocene of Monte Bolca (Eastman, 1904), where Blot (1980) said that a new genus of lophiid is to be named for Lophius brachysomus Agassiz; that a new genus of ogcocephalid is to be described; and that Histionotophorus bassanii (de Zigno) is an antennariid. Blot (1980) did not cite any reasons for placing Histionotophorus in the Antennariidae, and did not cite Rosen and Patterson's (1969) brief discussion of the genus, which they placed in the antennarioid family Brachionichthyidae. Pietsch (1981: 416) agreed, and suggested that the Eocene genus is synonymous with the extant Brachionichthys Bleeker. Thus the Monte Bolca lophiiforms indicate that at least three of the major lophiiform lineages (lophioids, antennarioids, and ogcocephaloids) were already in existence in the early Eocene. The only known ceratioid fossil, a female specimen identified as Acentrophryne longidens Regan (family Linophrynidae), was described from the Late Miocene of California by Pietsch and Lavenberg (1980).
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