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Chapter 10

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  1. Chapter 10 Neanderthals and Other Archaic Homo sapiens

  2. Chapter Outline • Early archaic H. Sapiens • A Review of Middle Pleistocene Evolution (circa 400,000–125,000 y.a.) • Middle Pleistocene Culture

  3. Chapter Outline • Neandertals: Late Archaic H. sapiens (130,000–35,000 y.a.) • Culture of Neandertals • Genetic Evidence • Evolutionary Trends in the Genus Homo

  4. Early Archaic Homo sapiens • Early archaic forms show morphological changes compared with H. erectus: • brain expansion • increased parietal breadth • some decrease in the size of the molars • general decrease in cranial and postcranial robusticity

  5. Early Archaic Homo sapiens • Conservative taxonomy classifies all specimens as archaic forms within the species Homo sapiens. • Other paleoanthropologists classify most specimens into other species of the genus Homo. • In this view, some earlier archaic forms could be ancestral to modern humans.

  6. Archaic Homo sapiens Discoveries (Outside of Europe)

  7. Archaic Homo sapiens Discoveries (Outside of Europe)

  8. Archaic Homo sapiens Discoveries in Europe

  9. Archaic Homo sapiens Discoveries in Europe

  10. Review of Middle Pleistocene Evolution (400,000-125,000 y.a.) • Like the erects/sapiens mix in Africa and China, fossils from Europe exhibit traits from both species. • Fossils from each continent differ, but the physical differences are not extraordinary. • There is a definite increase in brain size and a change in the shape of the skull.

  11. Middle Pleistocene Tools • African and European archaics invented the Levallois technique for tool making. • Acheulian tools are associated with hand axes. • Different tool traditions coexist in some areas.

  12. Settlements • People of the Mousterian culture lived in open sites, caves, and rock shelters. • Windbreaks of poles and skin were placed at the cave opening for protection against severe weather. • Fire was used for cooking, warmth, light, and keeping predators at bay.

  13. Subsistence • Remains of animal bones demonstrate that Neandertals were successful hunters. • They used close-proximity spears for hunting (spear thrower and bow and arrow weren’t invented until the Upper Paleolithic). • Patterns of trauma in Neandertal remains match those of contemporary rodeo performers, indicating close proximity to prey.

  14. Symbolic Behavior • Prevailing consensus has been that Neandertals were capable of articulate speech. • Even if Neandertals did speak, they did not have the same language capabilities of modern Homo sapiens.

  15. Burials • Neanderthals buried their dead. • Their burials included grave goods like animal bones and stone tools. • They placed the bodies of their dead in a flexed position.

  16. Three Major Evolutionary Transitions • Transition from early Homo to H. erectus. Geographically limited to Africa and occurred rapidly. • Transition of H. erectus grading into early H. sapiens. Not geographically limited, but occurred slowly and unevenly. • Transition from Archaic H. sapiens to anatomically modern H. sapiens.