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Sauron Dinosaur

Illustration courtesy Emiliano Troco

Dinosaurs may have once ruled the Earth, but how many can say they have a connection to Middle-earth?

A 40-foot creature, who once made North America its home about 95 milion years ago, has been named after the Eye of Sauron in The Lord of the Rings, National Geographic reports.

The species is called Sauroniops pachytholus, which in Greek translates to "eye of Sauron," because the fossil of the species discovered only included one large eye socket.

"The idea of a predator that is physically known only as its fierce eye reminded me of Sauron, in particular as depicted in Peter Jackson's movies," says study leader Andrea Cau.

The flesh-eating dinosaur is believed to have rivaled the Tyrannosaurus Rex in size and shape.

Who knows? Maybe Jackson will return the honor and feature the behemoth in his upcoming Hobbit trilogy?