Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Neanderthals: The Great Teacher

How many of you often feel that there was a lot more to the Neanderthal / Cro-Magnon interplay?  

Common knowledge has the two races co-existing for a period of time with the Neanderthal "vanishing" in the end.  Well now it is fairly well accepted that Neanderthal did not so much vanish as integrated to make modern Homo-sapiens what the are today. 

Now it appears that Neanderthal had a lot more to offer early man than genetic material.  Mounting evidence has shown that Neanderthal showed early humans how to construct sophisticated bone tools.  

Now this is not the first time that cultural traditions and others have been believed to have originated with Neanderthal to then influence Homo-Sapiens.  The tradition of burying the dead is one dramatic example.  But in general, according to the posting in New Scientist,   most researchers think that the bulk of  cultural exchange passed the other way, from humans to Neanderthals.    

From the article:
  • "It is just about possible, says Fred Coolidge at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, that over tens of thousands of years Neanderthals thought up a way of doing one thing – making these tools – that humans hadn't thought of before,"

Check out the NewScientist article HERE


Anonymous said...

"It is just about possible...Neanderthals thought up a way of doing one thing – making these tools – that humans hadn't thought of before,"

Once again it is assumed that Neanderthals were grunting brutes and Moderns were brilliant innovators.
Neanderthal brains were, on average, larger than modern human brains. Obviously they were not stupid.
It is modern-human arrogance to claim that it's barely possible that Neanderthals thought up one thing that Moderns hadn't already figured out.

Beam Me Up said...

I think the mind set comes more from the conventions of the day when Neanderthal was first uncovered. The heavy brow and sloping forehead didn't lend itself well to European culture of the early 1800s, Point of fact classification of the Neander sub species was put forward in 1866 by Ernst Haeckel, Homo stupidus. You can well understand that by the time Neanderthal or cave-men entered the early 20th century American culture, they were already well known to have been slow and stupid by modern standards. Of course we know now that is hardly the case, but many in academia still find it an easy fit.

Thanks for the note ANON, join in anytime