Publication Date

1993

Document Type

Dissertation/Thesis

First Advisor

Smith, Fred H.

Degree Name

M.A. (Master of Arts)

Department

Department of Anthropology

LCSH

Neanderthals||Prehistoric peoples--Croatia||Mandible||Human evolution||Vindija Cave (Croatia)

Abstract

The skeletal remains recovered from stratigraphic level G3 at Vindija Cave comprise one of the most recent samples of Neanderthals in Central Europe. Many morphological characteristics of the G3 hominids, such as the size and form of the supraorbital tori, anterior dentition size, and nasal aperture breadth, have been touted as transitional or "progressive" in previous discussions. Of particular interest are the five mandibles recovered from G3, which have been described as having stronger chin development and more vertical symphyses than other, especially earlier, Neanderthals (e.g., Krapina). However, the transitional nature of the Vindija mandibles has been questioned. In this paper the Vindija mandibular morphology, especially of the symphyseal region, is examined and compared with an earlier Neanderthal sample from Krapina (Croatia), an "early anatomically modem” sample from Klasies River Mouth (South Africa), and five recant anatomically modem samples from Bosnia (Pod) and the United States (Starkweather, Mattocks, Hudson Ruin, Robinson). Although the overall morphological pattern of the Vindija mandibles reaffirms the classification as Neanderthals, many features — such as the external symphyseal angle (measured from the occlusal plane), the degree of pogonion projection, the form of the mental trigon, and the presence of distinctive incurvatio mandibulae — indicate that the Vindija mandibles lie in between the early Krapina Neanderthals and the modem sample. Further evidence of the transitional nature of the Vindija hominids is demonstrated by their high degree of intra-group variability found for many of the metric and descriptive characters. This degree of variability would be expected for a population that is in the process of evolutionary transition, possibly the result of gene flow with more modem populations.

Comments

Includes bibliographical references (pages [150]-155)

Extent

xii, 169 pages

Language

eng

Publisher

Northern Illinois University

Rights Statement

In Copyright

Rights Statement 2

NIU theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from Huskie Commons for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without the written permission of the authors.

Media Type

Text

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