Skullcap of Neanderthal man

Skullcap of Neanderthal man

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Credit: JOHN READER/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Skullcap of Neanderthal Man Homo neanderthalensis, a specimen found in 1857 in a limestone quarry of the Neander Valley, Germany. The physical characteristics of the skullcap gave rise to two interpretations of Neanderthal man; either he was an early stage in human evolution, linking man and ape, or he was a degenerate version of modern man, crippled by rickets and idiocy. Further study showed that skeletal deformities were due to arthritis, not evolution & that Neanderthals were a sturdy & successful race with a body resembling modern cold-adapted people. Average brain size was over 1400cc. As hunter gatherers they ranged across Europe from 130,000-35,000 years ago.

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Keywords: anthropology, bone bones, fossil man, hominid, hominids, hominin, neanderthal man, palaeoanthropology, palaeontology, paleoanthropology, paleontology, skullcap, type specimen

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