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Greek cave gives up neanderthal treasures

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posted on Apr, 1 2013 @ 09:56 AM
A cave in Greece has given up a " treasure trove" of artifacts and fossils.

trove of Neanderthal fossils including bones of children and adults, discovered in a cave in Greece hints the area may have been a key crossroad for ancient humans, researchers say.

The timing of the fossils suggests Neanderthals and humans may have at least had the opportunity to interact, or cross paths, there, the researchers added.

Neanderthals are the closest extinct relatives of modern humans, apparently even occasionally interbreeding with our ancestors . Neanderthals entered Europe before modern humans did, and may have lasted there until about 35,000 years ago, although recent findings have called this date into question.

To learn more about the history of ancient humans, scientists have recently focused on Greece

They also found artifacts of neanderthal manufacture along with the remains of several individuals.

In the cave, the researchers found tools such as scrapers made of flint, quartz and seashells. The stone tools were all shaped, or knapped, in a way typical of Neanderthal artifacts .

Now, the scientists reveal they discovered 14 specimens of child and adult human remains in the cave, including teeth, a small fragment of skull, a vertebra, and leg and foot bones with bite and gnaw marks on them. The teeth strongly appear to be Neanderthal, and judging by marks on the teeth, the ancient people apparently had a diet of meat and diverse plants.

"Kalamakia, together with the single human tooth from the nearby cave site of Lakonis, are the first Neanderthal remains to be identified from Greece," Harvati said. The discoveries are "confirmation of a thriving and long-standing Neanderthal population in the region."

I can't wait to see if any DNA is recovered and how it fits in with the other current discoveries.

posted on Apr, 1 2013 @ 09:58 AM
S&F! Good find.

You have to wonder about the over-lapping of our species and neanderthal and the studies they show saying European-descended folk have neanderthal DNA. Just how advanced was our genetic cousin? Who really can say.. but I've always got my eye out for anything new about the topic! Thanks for sharing.

- Fim

posted on Apr, 1 2013 @ 10:03 AM
reply to post by Fimbulvetr

The crazy thing is east asians have more neanderthal DNA than Europeans do,
And it appears that these late Neanderthals are likely asiatic and are similar to modern humans in skeletal morphology, they have chins.

posted on Apr, 1 2013 @ 11:06 AM

Now, the scientists reveal they discovered 14 specimens of child and adult human remains in the cave, including... leg and foot bones with bite and gnaw marks on them.

You'd have gotten more response from the thread if you had titled it: "Evidence Neanderthals Ate Humans"

But thanks for posting this. Along with the Pluto's cavern story this morning, these are the stories that keep me coming back to read more here.

posted on Apr, 2 2013 @ 09:59 AM
That's exciting news!

I hope they can find some DNA, and I"m very interested to see what the skeletons can tell us. I sure wish I was on that dig (or better yet, in their labs!)

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