Essay on Neanderthals

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The first Neanderthal remains, discovered in Germany in 1856, were presented to the world of science at a meeting of the Lower Rhine Medical and Natural History Society held in Bonn in February 1857 and named a species, Homo neanderthalensis, by William King in 1864. Some Neanderthal fossils and other remains are in excellent condition, giving a good idea of Neanderthal culture. In 1887, two complete skeletons were found in a cave near Spy in Belgium, and more from sites in France in 1887, 1908 and 1911. These and other finds showed that the Neanderthals had populated Europe widely from about 130,000 to 28,000 years ago after which they became extinct. Most of these fossils were found in caves. Usually they are associated with cold…show more content…
Perhaps, where they coexisted, some difference prevented interbreeding or the production of hybrids between these populations and early human ancestors. Usually such differences between related species originate as adaptations to the environment, not as devices for reproductive isolation.
Neanderthals were hunter-gatherers who moved across Europe with the advance and retreat of the Ice Age glaciers. Their total population probably never exceeded 100,000. From 180,000 to 130,000years ago large glaciers covered much of Europe and Neanderthal remains are scarce. After 130,000years ago, tool technology developed rapidly to become the classic Neanderthal technology called the
Mousterian tradition. They created sets of tools with great variety and finely trimmed cutting edges. Flint stone properly chipped forms a cutting edge sharper than a steel scalpel.
Neanderthals were adapted to the cold northern climate, with short limbs and stocky bodies and flourished during a warmer interglacial period. There was great anatomical variation within this population. There is evidence that they took care of injured associates and sometimes carried out burials. Fossil remains provide evidence that they moved in small groups possibly occupying areas seasonally and subsisting by hunting big game such as reindeer. As they did not use bows and arrows, or other projectiles, hunting such big game would have required a group strategy. Animal bones
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