FRIEDRICH SAURER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY FRIEDRICH SAURER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Neanderthal skull. Computer artwork of a neanderthal (Homo neanderthalensis) skull. Compared to the modern human skull the neanderthal skull has a more prominent brow ridge, a broader, flatter nose and a more prominent jaw. Neanderthals were relatives of humans that inhabited Europe and western Asia between around 230,000 and 29,000 years ago. The physical differences are thought to have been adaptations to the cold environment in which they lived, as Europe was a far cooler region in that period. They did not use complex tools but had mastery of fire and built shelters. It is not known why they became extinct, but many suspect they were outcompeted by modern humans.
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