Paleontology, usually called paleontology [a] or paleontology, is the scientific study of life that existed before the Holocene period began, and sometimes includes it (roughly 11,700 years before the present). It entails the examination of fossils in order to identify species and investigate their relationships with one another and their surroundings (their paleoecology). Paleontological observations date all the way back to the 5th century BCE. As a result of Georges Cuvier's comparative anatomy studies, the science gained traction in the 18th century and grew significantly in the 19th. Paleontology is a branch of biology and geology that does not include the study of anatomically modern humans, unlike archaeology. It now employs methods from a variety of disciplines, including biochemistry, mathematics, and engineering. Paleontologists have been able to uncover much of the evolutionary history of life, almost all the way back to when Earth became capable of supporting life almost 4 billion years ago, thanks to the use of all of these approaches. All fossilized former life is studied by paleontologists. Corals and shellfish, as well as fish and animals, fall under this category. Paleontologists aren't simply interested in animals; they're also interested in ancient vegetation. They use the information they find to learn not only about the lives of the animals but also about what life was like on Earth in the past.