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Neanderthals - Meeting vs. Departure

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posted on Aug, 11 2014 @ 09:22 PM
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Please excuse if this is in the wrong forum, I wasn't sure where this should exactly go. MODs please relocate if necessary, thank you.

Pre-deluvian social interactions between distinct species of humans. Which interaction would have had a greater psychological impact, the initial meeting or the sudden departure?

Lately I have been very interested in pre-deluvian social interaction among all the various types of humans. I've been reading a lot of books and articles, and watching documentaries from every source I can think of, and something occured to me. During the course of these article and documentaries there is an almost inevitable diversion from facts where the author ventures into the realm of philosophical opinion and/or speculation, and this almost always happens when they breach one of the most important issues; social interaction between multiple seperate species of humans.

In each documentary and in almost every book there is a description of the first meeting between our species (modern humans), and other types of humans (typically neanderthal). This first meeting is always dramatic, sometimes violent, sometimes peaceful. In most cases the authors describe curiosity, fear, resentment, adoration, desire, and a myriad range of human emotions that a person would logically conclude the two human species must have felt towards each other in those first meetings.

By the most modest estimates we lived around, and sometimes along side our closest cousins for at least ten times longer than the current modern era of civilization, which academia tells us started around 3,500 b.c.e. Many of us even share some of their DNA, which means that at some point we were relatively close to one another as cousin species.

It recently occured to me that with all of the information I have seen so far, be it concrete scientific evidence or mere speculation based on modern behavioral habits and tendencies, the authors always have a tendency to focus on the "meeting", but never the departure or subsequent loss. It is safe to say that our oldest collective memory passed down to us through oral and written traditions is that of the deluge (the flood). The memory of neanderthals, denisovans and any other human species was probably lost even before the flood, during the younger dryas period.

I can't help but feeling that the introduction was far less traumatic than the departure. Could you imagine spending generation after generation with a group of similar yet distinctively different humans, only to wake up one day and there just aren't any left? Does anyone else think that the loss of our closest cousins would have been traumatic for the first few generations after their extinction? Did our ancestors even care? Did they scour the earth for their lost friends, or were modern humans actually the cause? Does anyone think that our ancestors would have even noticed the loss of the other humans, let alone mourn such a loss?




posted on Aug, 11 2014 @ 10:29 PM
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I'm sure that some modern humans did befriend some of these other types of humanoids. I feel that some did mourn the loss of their friends. I would bet, being that humans are and were a warring race of beings, that we did kill off many neanderthal just because they were different. Look at the writings of our history. We enslaved others that were not like us and forced them to follow our ways or they were killed. I'm pretty sure this trait goes back a very long time.

We have no way of knowing exactly what the neandarthals or other hominoids were like. We can guess using the remaining evidence but that is just a logical guess. Maybe they were fighters too, but we will never know for sure.



posted on Aug, 11 2014 @ 10:40 PM
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Remember, there was no written record. So the departing species would have left a little at a time, and as the older ones dies off without reproducing it would have been the same as any other death in the tribe, a grief for the departed but knowing them as older tribal members. I don't think the difference was that large in appearance, so maybe nobody knew that the other was that different enough to miss them as a separate unit.



posted on Aug, 11 2014 @ 11:03 PM
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a reply to: SentientEruditeSapien

I have little to base this on, but I think modern humans absorbed neanderthals. I've heard claims that red hair and freckles is a neanderthal trait. Today, red hair and freckles are found in a few pockets of Western Europe. Also, Ive read claims that the Basque Language may be a remnant of a Neanderthal spoken language. Basque is a language isolate, unrelated to any of the surrounding Indo-Eurooean languages.

Google it, very interesting stuff.



posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 12:44 AM
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originally posted by: SentientEruditeSapien

Pre-deluvian social interactions between distinct species of humans. Which interaction would have had a greater psychological impact, the initial meeting or the sudden departure?


before I get too far ahead of myself I need to ask, when you say PreDeluvian do you mean in a religious context I.E, Noah's Flood event or are you referring to the somewhat exaggerated geological events of the rising of sea levels post the most recent Glacial Maximum? Even if you're utilizing a religious point of view I'm ot trying to prejudge your personal opinions, just trying to give the most appropriate answers I can.


Lately I have been very interested in pre-deluvian social interaction among all the various types of humans. I've been reading a lot of books and articles, and watching documentaries from every source I can think of, and something occured to me. During the course of these article and documentaries there is an almost inevitable diversion from facts where the author ventures into the realm of philosophical opinion and/or speculation, and this almost always happens when they breach one of the most important issues; social interaction between multiple seperate species of humans.

I would agree that as a result of one simple fact, written language had yet to be invented, we are forced to approach from point of view that relies somewhat on speculation but there are also more recent corollaries that we draw from as well. Particularly European interactions with people in the Americas, the South Pacific and East Asia over the past half millennia during the "golden age of exploration".


In each documentary and in almost every book there is a description of the first meeting between our species (modern humans), and other types of humans (typically neanderthal). This first meeting is always dramatic, sometimes violent, sometimes peaceful. In most cases the authors describe curiosity, fear, resentment, adoration, desire, and a myriad range of human emotions that a person would logically conclude the two human species must have felt towards each other in those first meetings.

Again, while somewhat speculative, there are legitimate parallels between what likely occurred 100,000 BPE and what occurred during the 16th and 17th centuries as Europeans began to leave their mark on indigenous populations across the previously unexplored world. Or at least a world that hadn't been explored in that magnitude since Homo Erectus left Africa and made its mark across the Middle East, western Asia and all the way down to what is now Indonesia.



By the most modest estimates we lived around, and sometimes along side our closest cousins for at least ten times longer than the current modern era of civilization, which academia tells us started around 3,500 b.c.e. Many of us even share some of their DNA, which means that at some point we were relatively close to one another as cousin species.

This I completely agree with and, especially over the last 15-20 years as we have explored and learned more about these people and advances in our ability to map the genomes of Neanderthal.

I can't help but feeling that the introduction was far less traumatic than the departure. Could you imagine spending generation after generation with a group of similar yet distinctively different humans, only to wake up one day and there just aren't any left? Does anyone else think that the loss of our closest cousins would have been traumatic for the first few generations after their extinction? Did our ancestors even care? Did they scour the earth for their lost friends, or were modern humans actually the cause? Does anyone think that our ancestors would have even noticed the loss of the other humans, let alone mourn such a loss?


I think that if it were to have occurred in that fashion then certainly it would have been a massive shock for people to 'wake up one day and find themselves alone'. My own research leads me to believe that it was not at all an abrupt alteration of the human landscape though.

The fact that we can trace Neanderthal dna in the vast majority of people of European descent shows that we were not so far removed from our earlier cousins that we were yet entirely separate species as we were able to still breed with them.

As to your question about whether or not we would have mourned their loss despite being slightly different freom ourselves, I would say undoubtedly that was the case. There are several sites in the Levantine valley, an area that runs from Northern Israel up into central Lebanon was an area where not only did both types of humans occupy it but they did, at least at times, share the very same living areas or villages. Not only did they live, work and cooperate to maintain mutual survival, they buried their dead in the same cemeteries which to me indicates they considered themselves close enough friends or family to share not just their homes and meals but even their burial practices if not indeed their religious practices. The Levantine valley was quite literally the first melting pot of cultures coming to gether and learning from one another. A huge misconception of many people is that one of the major downfalls of HNS was that HSS moving north out of Africa were slightly smarter and possessed better tools that allowed them to out compete their older relatives who were already there for 100's of thousands of years.

The fact of the matter is that the HNS already in the Levant had the superior tool kits and likely hunting strategies not the other way around. This means we in fact owe our very existence and our long term survival to the assistance of these people who had to have welcomed us into their communities. There is some evidence that the HNS who were already there in the middle east survived a little bit longer than their European counter parts who were slowly pushed out of their territory as it was over run by HSS. My pet hypothesis is that those in Europe were decimated at a more rapid pace in the same way the indigenous Americans were after initial contact with modern Europeans 500 years ago... diseases for which they has no natural immunities. Just like in the modern era, there is always a small percentage with natural immunities and they were able to survive a little longer as they slowly lost ground to encroachment until finally sometime between 20 AND 30 thousand years BPE the last vestiges of truly pure Neanderthals were hanging on by a thread on the edges of Portugal and Gibraltar and possibly the island of Malta.

Back to your thoughts on whether or not they were mourned, I believe that at that point, the lines between us and them were so blurred as a result of intermingling of genetics that it wasn't seen as a loss to the degree you are hypothesizing.

The reason the percentages of HNS dna being in the 2-6% range is something like this... generation one results in a 50/50 hybrid. As the influx of HSS continued to leave Africa and continued to breed with the now hybrid indigenous Europeans, the next generation results in a higher percentage of HSS DNA and a lower % of HNS DNA with the process continuing for millennia until the only "pure" HNS were relegated to isolated areas on the farthest fringes of Europe slowly loosing ground to the new comers.



posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 01:46 AM
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a reply to: peter vlar

Good insight! Just what I was looking for, a well defined point of view. As for my definition of pre-deluvian, I didn't exactly mean it to take either context, just referring to the time period after the younger dryas in which sea levels inevitably rose. I'm not interested in how quickly the water went up, just the psychological impact it seems to have had on our collective memories. That is the direction I intended my question to go regarding the Neanderthal's final departure. That is, would the loss of the other hominids/hybrids/kin have left much of a psychological impact on our ancestors.

I personally believe that the 1,300 year period of extreme cold during the younger dryas was probably far more traumatic than the actual deluge, but that the rising water levels are only the most recent global cataclysm and therefore took precedence in the memories and oral traditions of our species.

I suppose after a few generations our next-of-kin would have started to forget the Neanderthals and any other human-related species they were exposed to. These different people would have passed into the mythology of the tribes that remembered them the most. I suspect some peoples remembered the Neanderthals for quite a while, only to have their priorities shift dramatically when the temperatures started to plummet again.

I just can't help wondering how attached some groups might have been to one another. Like you said before, the bones tell us we lived in the same areas, and sometimes together, for tens of thousands of years in some cases. That's a LOT of time to bond.
edit on 8/12/2014 by SentientEruditeSapien because: Editing



posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 02:34 AM
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originally posted by: SentientEruditeSapien
a reply to: peter vlar

Good insight! Just what I was looking for, a well defined point of view. As for my definition of pre-deluvian, I didn't exactly mean it to take either context, just referring to the time period after the younger dryas in which sea levels inevitably rose. I'm not interested in how quickly the water went up, just the psychological impact it seems to have had on our collective memories. That is the direction I intended my question to go regarding the Neanderthal's final departure. That is, would the loss of the other hominids/hybrids/kin have left much of a psychological impact on our ancestors.


Personally, I am inclined to agree with you, at least to an extent, that the particular time period you refer to would have had its own psychological impact and it's an aspect of anthropology/paleoanthropology that there is very little research into. I hope you can at least understand why I would ask for a little clarification on exactly what your frame of reference was when discussing pre-deluvian vs an antideluvian definition because 99 times out of 100, it's used to describe an event from a biblical perspective so I do appreciate you clarifying your own intent.

I personally believe that the 1,300 year period of extreme cold during the younger dryas was probably far more traumatic than the actual deluge, but that the rising water levels are only the most recent global cataclysm and therefore took precedence in the memories and oral traditions of our species.

It would have been a huge mental WTF for anyone living at that time as HSS hadn't been in Europe or adjusting to the cold for nearly as long as HNS. It's one reason why the furthest south you see HNS is the middle east and the Mediterranean coast of what is today Israel and Lebanon. They were extremely well adapted to the colder climate of Europe but did not fare well at all in warmer areas and the time frame we see them moving into those areas was during a period of declining temperatures. One thing to consider when looking into that 1300-1400 year period of the younger Dryas is that it had its largest affect in Northern Europe. Ice Cores from Greenland Britain show that temperatures had dropped to approximately 20-25 degrees colder than previous climatic norms but areas farther South, particularly the Mediterranean areas, Spain, Italy, Northern Africa were still pretty temperate. At least in comparison to northern Europe. The sea level rise was much slower than most think it was though there were a couple of events that dumped a large amount of fresh water into the Atlantic altering the gulf stream and im pretty confident saying that its one of the things that led to the cooling trend seen in Europe during that period of time. The gulf stream current is what gives Europe its much warmer climate than North American areas that are at the same latitudes in question.


I suppose after a few generations our next-of-kin would have started to forget the Neanderthals and any other human-related species they were exposed to. These different people would have passed into the mythology of the tribes that remembered them the most. I suspect some peoples remembered the Neanderthals for quite a while, only to have their priorities shift dramatically when the temperatures started to plummet again.


As I alluded to in my previous post, there wasn't so much an us or them at that point. We had mixed together enough that it was all just "us" with a little of both or all 3 humans in Europe mixed together as we see both Neanderthal AND Denisovan dna occurring in many Asian haplogroups. However, while we've got a fairly decent idea of when Neanderthal ceased to be, we also know that isolated groups survived in pockets of Spain, Portugal and Malta so it's entirely possible that some of these isolated groups held out longer than we can say with any degree of certainty. I just try to avoid speculation and stick to what I can say that I believe with a high degree of certainty


I just can't help wondering how attached some groups might have been to one another. Like you said before, the bones tell us we lived in the same areas, and sometimes together, for tens of thousands of years in some cases. That's a LOT of time to bond.


Absolutely. I believe that at least in some areas both HSS and HNS became intrinsic parts of the same communities and one of the important pieces of data in my opinion is that both were buried in the same cemeteries. You don't do that unless there was a strong connection or in my opinion, familial bonds. There' just no way they would have taken the time to give them a proper burial and with similar grave goods as well, if there were not close relationships and social bonds.

To me,the real question is when did the lines between one or the other cease to be distinct and instead blur to the degree that we were both comfortable enough to make that leap from competitor or even possibly enemy,to someone we called friend and had established relationships with that were strong enough to cohabitate, share hunting and familial ties with. I should stop there because I can ramble on all day about this lol Great idea for a thread topic so thanks for posting this in the first place.



posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 02:35 AM
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a reply to: SentientEruditeSapien

Departing Neanderthals?

We haven't departed, yet ... your ideology is built on "fantastic" ignorance, built upon religious onsense. This religious nonsense, has the goal of "uniting" the human race. Which, in a different context .. is simply to "dominate the entire world".

Which basically can be translated like this. You, who consider yourself to be "human" and the rest of us to be some degraded animals. Is in reality just a murderous scumbags, who go around killing everything in sight. And once the deed is done, you find an excuse to excuse your murderous behaviour. Either you blame it on us ... we are savages you know, we don't like you. We got "eyebrows" that stand out ... and we're "strong" ... woo hoo. We must be monkey's right.

The behavioral pattern, your so called human race displays ... to murder anything in sight, and then find an excuse for it. And blame it on the victim ... is kind of psychotic behavior, isn't it.

A lion is a lion, right ... can you imagine a lion, that goes around saying "God, sorry I ate you ... why did you force me to eat you. You're evil". I mean, that lion would be one for the psych ward, don't you think. Of course, you could understand a buffalo herd, that conspired to murder all lions. Because lions eat buffalos, right. Buffalos, and lions ... don't you think there is something wrong with that picture. It's a natural order, that lions eat buffalos ... otherwise, the entire eco system, might be in danger ... oobs, kinda like now ... don't you think.

Seriously, what gives you the right to murder all my kind. What gives you the right, to destroy nature ... and then, on top of it all ... you blame us ... suddenly, WE'RE to blame in some way, because YOU, the human race made us extinct? I mean, your entire species is a certified nutcase ...




posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 03:17 AM
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a reply to: peter vlar

I was aware of most of the facts you've presented to me except for the mutual burials, which fascinates me even more now. Obviously our entire species has a long and diverse history of ancestor worship, which leads me to believe that the emotional bonds must have been very strong for some groups to share gravesites.

I'm definitely going to be doing some research of my own on shared burials.



posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 03:25 AM
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a reply to: bjarneorn

Okay, I don't know what you're talking about, as I've spent most my life as an atheist. Also, by departing I simply meant to avert the over use of terms like extinction or assimilation. There is no religious context by using the word departure.

You spent no time examining or answering my initial question, so I'll reiterate.

The initial question arose from a simple observation that most of the modern depictions of humans focus on the meeting rather than the eventual loss.

Another thing to point out, which by your previous rant I feel safe in assuming you need to be informed of, is that lions don't talk. If they did, I would make a point of ensuring they didn't over use quotations and periods in threes.



posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 10:28 AM
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a reply to: SentientEruditeSapien

Perhaps the answer is that they never really went away. They live on in us.



posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 03:17 PM
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originally posted by: Astyanax
a reply to: SentientEruditeSapien

Perhaps the answer is that they never really went away. They live on in us.


Yes they were absorbed and no one in those times would have noted the death of the last 'pure blooded' Neanderthal even if it was known.



posted on Aug, 12 2014 @ 06:02 PM
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a reply to: Astyanax

Hence the average 2-3% genetic match among non-African modern humans.




posted on Aug, 14 2014 @ 11:49 AM
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a reply to: SentientEruditeSapien

Indeed. By the way, I think bjarneorn is presenting as a Neanderthal.



posted on Aug, 17 2014 @ 12:16 AM
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a reply to: Astyanax

People do that? Is that a real thing? Spontaneous improvisational representation?



posted on Aug, 17 2014 @ 12:41 AM
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a reply to: SentientEruditeSapien

its like the ATS version of the Second City comedy troupe or Who's Line is it Anyway?



posted on Aug, 17 2014 @ 02:04 AM
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a reply to: SentientEruditeSapien

Why assume it's spontaneous? Maybe it's his carefully-considered position. We have gender politics; why not invent species politics too, now that we have a few different species to play around with instead of just one?

I'm thinking of starting a party for those of us who self-identify as Homo erectus. Very evocative name, that — Homo Erectus.



posted on Aug, 17 2014 @ 05:16 PM
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a reply to: Astyanax

I cannot argue with that.





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