Named By: Harry Govier Seeley - 1887.
Synonyms: Poekilopleuron pusillus, Poekilopleuron minor.
Classification: Chordata, Reptilia, Dinosauria, Saurischia, Theropoda, Coelurosauria, Compsognathidae.
Species: A. pusillus (type).
Known locations: England, Isle of Wight.
Time period: Early Cretaceous.
Fossil representation: Femur, sacrum, pubis and some vertebrae.
In 1876 Richard Owen named a new species of Poekilopleuron called P. pusillus. In 1879 this species was adjusted to P. minor by Edward Drinker Cope. Then in 1887 Harry Govier Seeley renamed this species as a new distinct genus, Aristosuchus. However, despite the name ‘suchus’ which is Ancient Greek for crocodile, this creature was actually a dinosaur. Although the incomplete remains make it difficult to reconstruct this dinosaur, it seems to have been a small compsognathid similar to Compsognathus.
- On Aristosuchus pusillus (Owen), being further notes on the fossils described by Sir R. Owen as Poikilopleuron pusillus, Owen. - Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society of London. 43: 221–228. - H. G. Seeley - 1887.
- Fox, Owen and the small Wealden theropods Calamospondylus and Aristosuchus. - Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, 19 (Suppl. 3), 66. - D. Naish - 1999.
- The historical taxonomy of the Lower Cretaceous theropods (Dinosauria) Calamospondylus and Aristosuchus from the Isle of Wight. - Proceedings of the Geologists’ Association 113: 153–163. - D. Naish - 2002.