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Into the mind of a Neanderthal
New Scientist ^ | Wednesday, January 18, 2012 | Thomas Wynn

Posted on 01/21/2012 5:48:42 AM PST by SunkenCiv

Palaeoanthropologists now know a great deal about these ice-age Europeans who flourished between 200,000 and 30,000 years ago. We know, for example, that Neanderthals shared about 99.84 per cent of their DNA with us, and that we and they evolved separately for several hundred thousand years. We also know Neanderthal brains were a bit larger than ours and were shaped a bit differently. And we know where they lived, what they ate and how they got it.

Skeletal evidence shows that Neanderthal men, women and children led very strenuous lives, preoccupied with hunting large mammals. They often made tactical use of terrain features to gain as much advantage as possible, but administered the coup de grace with thrusting spears. Based on their choice of stone for tools, we know they almost never travelled outside small home territories that were rarely over 1000 square kilometres.

The Neanderthal style of hunting often resulted in injuries, and the victims were often nursed back to health by others. But few would have survived serious lower body injuries, since individuals who could not walk might well have been abandoned. It looks as if Neanderthals had well-developed way-finding and tactical abilities, and empathy for group members, but also that they made pragmatic decisions when necessary.

Looking closely at the choices Neanderthals made when they manufactured and used tools shows that they organised their technical activities much as artisans, such as blacksmiths, organise their production. Like blacksmiths, they relied on "expert" cognition, a form of observational learning and practice acquired through apprenticeship that relies heavily on long-term procedural memory.

(Excerpt) Read more at newscientist.com ...


TOPICS: History; Science; Travel
KEYWORDS: godsgravesglyphs; neandertal; neandertals; neanderthal; neanderthals
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Neanderthals shared about 99.84 per cent of their DNA with us (Image: Action Press/Rex Features)

Into the mind of a Neanderthal

1 posted on 01/21/2012 5:48:46 AM PST by SunkenCiv
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To: SunkenCiv

“...we know...”

No, you’re guessing with a tiny bit of evidence.


2 posted on 01/21/2012 5:56:50 AM PST by vladimir998
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To: vladimir998

Thanks vladimir998.
...we know they almost never travelled outside small home territories that were rarely over 1000 square kilometres.
It used to be "known" that they didn't eat fish at all, but during the past two years all of a sudden, "fish was an important part of the Neandertal diet". It's very, very important to some people to deny that Neandertal is ancestral to much of the modern world, and this article is written by someone who does that, right after pointing out how very similar Neandertal behavior was to ours.


3 posted on 01/21/2012 6:04:26 AM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: vladimir998
Man is man and always has been. His cleverness is provoked by curiousity and necessity.

The wheel was invented the first time someone saw a rock roll down a hill...but alas, the observer was killed in the landslide so it wasn't until his 8th cousin, 23 times removed saw the same thing and lived to invent the wheel.

His younger brother invented the unicycle, left his wife and went off to do the hot blonde in cave No. 37.

The hot blonde stole the unicycle and went off to Cave No. 28 where the priest lived and confessed her sin. For her penance, she had to donate the unicycle to the church and the priest enjoyed his Sunday rides.

You probably think this is all made up but we have the unicyle at our little museum in the Village. Hoe's that for evidence!!

4 posted on 01/21/2012 6:10:17 AM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; decimon; 1010RD; 21twelve; 24Karet; 2ndDivisionVet; ...

 GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother & Ernest_at_the_Beach
Erratum: in addition to author Thomas Wynn, the article was also authored by Frederick L. Coolidge.

KEYWORDS: neandertal; neandertals; neanderthal; neanderthals To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list.


5 posted on 01/21/2012 6:11:58 AM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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How To Think Like a Neandertal How To Think Like a Neandertal
by Thomas Wynn
and Frederick L. Coolidge
for Kindle


6 posted on 01/21/2012 6:16:01 AM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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See, I waiting until waaay into the topic before posting it this time.
The Neandertal Enigma
by James Shreeve

in local libraries
Frayer's own reading of the record reveals a number of overlooked traits that clearly and specifically link the Neandertals to the Cro-Magnons. One such trait is the shape of the opening of the nerve canal in the lower jaw, a spot where dentists often give a pain-blocking injection. In many Neandertal, the upper portion of the opening is covered by a broad bony ridge, a curious feature also carried by a significant number of Cro-Magnons. But none of the alleged 'ancestors of us all' fossils from Africa have it, and it is extremely rare in modern people outside Europe." [pp 126-127]

7 posted on 01/21/2012 6:18:29 AM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: SunkenCiv

“The Neanderthal style of hunting often resulted in injuries, and the victims were often nursed back to health by others. But few would have survived serious lower body injuries, since individuals who could not walk might well have been abandoned. It looks as if Neanderthals had well-developed way-finding and tactical abilities, and empathy for group members, but also that they made pragmatic decisions when necessary.”

Obama-Romney care in Bedrock.


8 posted on 01/21/2012 6:20:01 AM PST by PLMerite (Shut the Beyotch Down! Burn, baby, burn!)
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To: SunkenCiv

The genetic difference between us is inconsequential and I believe there is a tendency to MAGNIFY the differences between us by some scholars.


9 posted on 01/21/2012 6:24:02 AM PST by ZULU (LIBERATE HAGIA SOPHIA!!!!!)
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To: SunkenCiv
From the article:

Also typical of the Neanderthal behavior was a willingness to employ the teachings of Karl Marx over and over again, despite the evidence that over and over, villages would decay and vanish after implementing Marx's systems.

Sorry, couldn't resist :)

10 posted on 01/21/2012 6:24:45 AM PST by GreenAccord (Bacon Akbar)
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To: PLMerite

“Obama-Romney care in Bedrock.”

I doubt there will be much empathy for group members in government health control.


11 posted on 01/21/2012 6:29:42 AM PST by Psalm 144 (Voodoo Republicans: Don't read their lips - watch their hands.)
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To: SunkenCiv
[The Neanderthals]....were neophobic, dogmatic and xenophobic.

Ah, yes, the stereotype of the Neanderthal bigot!!!!

12 posted on 01/21/2012 6:30:12 AM PST by Honorary Serb (Kosovo is Serbia! Free Srpska! Abolish ICTY!)
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To: SunkenCiv

They actually spent time wondering if neanderthals had a sense of humor?

“Knock, knock”
“We don’t have doors.”

They were angry people.


13 posted on 01/21/2012 6:31:32 AM PST by blueunicorn6 ("A crack shot and a good dancer")
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To: SunkenCiv

You mean they examined a FREEREPER....!


14 posted on 01/21/2012 6:39:17 AM PST by njslim
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To: SunkenCiv

You mean they examined a FREEREPER....!


15 posted on 01/21/2012 6:39:56 AM PST by njslim
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To: vladimir998
That's my reaction as well. These are perfectly plausible speculations based on inferences from group size and tools. Plausible, yes ... but for all we really know, Neanderthals had a rich language and narrative tradition, were musical fiends, and had pi out to nine places.

Speaking of pi ... I have an historical/cultural question. The ancients, of course, made a big deal out of pi, and several different cultures figured it out, apparently independently, to a surprising number of decimal places. My question is, what interested them in pi to begin with? Early mathematics arose mostly in the context of practical problem solving, and it's fairly easy to see why various calculations were developed. But what about pi? Am I overlooking some obvious Bronze Age problem that would have drawn attention to that particular ratio?

16 posted on 01/21/2012 6:40:14 AM PST by sphinx
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To: SunkenCiv
The article starts off like these were neo humans which is the imagination of the author and not science. The older skulls had heavy brow ridges link very ole persons but the young ones did not. A Dr. of dental something or another worked wit archaeologists and figured out that Neanderthals lost their baby teeth between the age of 20 and 30 years. A show on PBS showed the voice box shape and they figured out the tones the ape would be able to make and it sounded like a howler monkey. Strange how these articles cherry pick and dream that Neanderthals were human.
17 posted on 01/21/2012 6:44:44 AM PST by mountainlion (I am voting for Sarah after getting screwed again by the DC Thugs.)
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To: sphinx

“Am I overlooking some obvious Bronze Age problem that would have drawn attention to that particular ratio? “

They needed it to figure out the area of the crop circles the ancient astronauts left when their ships landed to teach primitive man how to levitate giant stone blocks to build large structures.


18 posted on 01/21/2012 6:49:30 AM PST by SoCal Pubbie
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To: SunkenCiv

I’m not sure how you hunt large animals - meaning bigger than deer - with spears, when your living group is five to ten people. That means two or three men at most. Maybe one man and a boy.

If you start sending women up against bison with a spear, your group isn’t going to have enough babies to sustain itself. If you lose one man, your group faces starvation.


19 posted on 01/21/2012 6:56:19 AM PST by heartwood
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To: blueunicorn6

lol!


20 posted on 01/21/2012 6:56:19 AM PST by 6SJ7 (Meh.)
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To: sphinx
We know pi is only approximate. That means all answers employing pi are approximate....a mathematicians nightmare.

That has always upset me. I'm still sick about it.

21 posted on 01/21/2012 7:01:26 AM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: sphinx

Fencing? Knowing how many trees to cut down, etc. to enclose the land?

Sundials? Making ‘em small, and big for the EEEvil 1%?


22 posted on 01/21/2012 7:01:31 AM PST by treetopsandroofs (Had FDR been GOP, there would have been no World Wars, just "The Great War" and "Roosevelt's Wars".)
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To: sphinx
But what about pi?

Maybe they were inspired to find this ratio by observing a full moon?

23 posted on 01/21/2012 7:03:19 AM PST by gcraig (Freedom isn't free)
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To: Sacajaweau

Man invernted not just the wheel, but the also the pole required to make use of the new found technology.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zFTttl4Bmz4


24 posted on 01/21/2012 7:18:35 AM PST by Deaf Smith
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To: SoCal Pubbie; Sacajaweau; treetopsandroofs; gcraig
Thanks for the speculations. There will probably be more. It's an interesting puzzle. In my modest attempts to find an answer, I've stumped quite a few math teachers as well as several acquaintances with heavy-duty professional math credentials (a couple of physicists, a math Ph.D doing advanced acoustic work for the Navy, a couple of other scientists -- no slouches). No answers so far, so I thought I'd pose it here, at the world's greatest font of obscure knowledge.

I do like SoCalPubbie's speculation, but on reflection, there's an obvious problem. If the aliens taught the ancients to levitate rocks to build large structures, they would risk the power of pi being turned on themselves, with large rocks and even astroids being hurled intergallactically to smash the home plant. This is presumably how the Bugs did it in Starship Troopers -- is there a more plausible explanation? -- and since the aliens had undoubtedly time-travelled, we must assume they'd seen the movie and would know better than to incur that risk. So as attractive as your theory is, I'm still open for additional explanations.

The ancients had their fair share of Einsteins. I don't know how the uber-brilliant think, but perhaps such questions just occur naturally to them as they sit around fires poking at the coals with a stick: "H'm. The ratio of the circumference of a circle to the diameter. That's an interesting question. I wonder if I could figure it out, and without algebra and decimal notation. That would be way cool." If you are smart enough, maybe you really think that way. But I'm still looking for a more mundane theory.

25 posted on 01/21/2012 7:31:06 AM PST by sphinx
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To: SunkenCiv

The interesting thing not mentioned here is that Black Africans are the only major group in the world that supposedly does not carry Neanderthal genes. This may sound racist, but since Africa is the most backward continent, contrary to the author’s conclusion, perhaps the Neanderthals bestowed a higher intelligence on us. They did have bigger brains.


26 posted on 01/21/2012 7:32:18 AM PST by The Sons of Liberty (Psalm 109:8 Let his days be few and let another take his office. - Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin)
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To: Deaf Smith

You made my day. My son is in advertising. I sent it to him!!


27 posted on 01/21/2012 7:36:40 AM PST by Sacajaweau
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To: sphinx

“My question is, what interested them in pi to begin with?”

Had to do with hat sizes.


28 posted on 01/21/2012 7:59:35 AM PST by Dr. Bogus Pachysandra ( Ya can't pick up a turd by the clean end!)
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To: vladimir998

***No, you’re guessing with a tiny bit of evidence.***

I have read that the one item never found in a Neanderthal site is a bone needle. As a result some say they were covered with a coat of hair.

I’ve seen a few people who would almost fit their description.


29 posted on 01/21/2012 8:02:20 AM PST by Ruy Dias de Bivar ( P!$$ on the Taliban. Issue MORE BEER!)
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To: PLMerite

****Obama-Romney care in Bedrock.****

Then there is that little problem with cannibalism of the dead, or was that Homo Erectus.


30 posted on 01/21/2012 8:05:52 AM PST by Ruy Dias de Bivar ( P!$$ on the Taliban. Issue MORE BEER!)
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To: Sacajaweau

This is all a good story, but in reality all that matters in the world is if Newt asked for an open marriage.


31 posted on 01/21/2012 8:07:29 AM PST by The_Media_never_lie
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To: SunkenCiv

When I saw the title, I thought it was going to be a slur on the Tea Party.


32 posted on 01/21/2012 8:09:10 AM PST by Daveinyork
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To: Ruy Dias de Bivar

33 posted on 01/21/2012 8:12:28 AM PST by Liberty Valance (Keep a simple manner for a happy life :o)
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To: SunkenCiv
In the final count, when Neanderthals and modern humans found themselves competing across the European landscape 30,000 years ago, those cognitive differences may well have been decisive in seeing off the Neanderthals.

"Competing" is an euphemism. Human evolution is driven by tribal warfare. We didn't out-hunt the Neanderthals, we killed them off. Mainstream anthroplogists avoid that subject like the plague.

There is little evidence the Neanderthals were religious, while the modern humans were. That doomed the Neanderthals because religion provides a significant competitive advantage in tribal warfare. Mainstream anthropologists have selective hearing on that subject also.

34 posted on 01/21/2012 8:47:50 AM PST by Reeses
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To: Sacajaweau

Sometimes the application of new technology, such as the invention of the wheel takes a long time to be fully appreciated.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WX8Du9pusdA


35 posted on 01/21/2012 9:26:48 AM PST by Deaf Smith
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To: Deaf Smith

The face in #1 looks sort of like Mel Brooks.


36 posted on 01/21/2012 9:55:05 AM PST by marsh2
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To: Reeses

Neandertal didn’t go extinct, Neandertal has over a billion living ancestors.


37 posted on 01/21/2012 4:03:51 PM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: mountainlion

Strange how your post contained so many imaginary things as if they were facts.


38 posted on 01/21/2012 4:19:13 PM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: SunkenCiv

Kinda like evolution and global warming. There are always at least two sides to a story and usually many more. I can’t remember the guy on the radio that had a book out on his dental observations. You can do your fact check on the PBS show quite easily.


39 posted on 01/21/2012 5:08:51 PM PST by mountainlion (I am voting for Sarah after getting screwed again by the DC Thugs.)
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To: SunkenCiv
Neanderthals shared about 99.84 per cent of their DNA with us

If geneticists are to be believed, we shared 100 percent of our DNA with some of their women!

40 posted on 01/21/2012 5:13:36 PM PST by Defiant (If there are infinite parallel universes, why Lord, am I living in the one with Obama as President?)
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To: SunkenCiv
It seems strange to me that you are saying that I imagined things when the writer of the article makes up facts and tells us about the sense of humor of an extinct animal. How would any human know the sense of humor of any creature? This is defiantly unscientific. It can not be proved. It can not be repeated. It is unscientific trash. At least I was trying to provide observations of a dental researcher.
41 posted on 01/21/2012 5:29:17 PM PST by mountainlion (I am voting for Sarah after getting screwed again by the DC Thugs.)
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To: sphinx

Triangles and angles...all related to PI. You have to know PI to calculate angles. If you start starring at the sky and and try to navigate by them, everything turns into angles. If you try to build anything, you run into angles everywhere.

In other words EVERYTHING REQUIRES PI! You aren’t much into math are ya?


42 posted on 01/21/2012 5:38:20 PM PST by mamelukesabre
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To: mountainlion

There’s dental evidence that Europeans are descended from Neandertal (posted above). Your statement that Neandertals were not human is nonsense.


43 posted on 01/21/2012 6:22:45 PM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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bmfl


44 posted on 01/21/2012 6:38:39 PM PST by Titan Magroyne (What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving.)
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To: mamelukesabre
In other words EVERYTHING REQUIRES PI!

Just remember that Pi are round...cornbread are square.

45 posted on 01/21/2012 8:57:38 PM PST by oldsalt (There's no such thing as a free lunch.)
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To: sphinx

How old do you think the “science” behind a structure like Stonehenge is?

Examples of henges made of wood have been found not only in Europe but along the east coast of the United States. Is this knowledge of the Sun and Moon only 30,000 years at its oldest, or is it very ancient and even known by the Neanderthal people. The reason I bring it up is that henges are based on a circle, and knowing the degrees along the edge of a circle would be important to determing seasons, moon phases, and lunar/solar eclipses.

Ancient peoples may have had sophisticated mathematics because they were observant of how the natural world around them moved, and wasn’t static.


46 posted on 01/21/2012 9:56:33 PM PST by SatinDoll (NO FOREIGN NATIONALS AS OUR PRESIDENT!)
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To: SunkenCiv

Archaeologists consider any primate that came down out of a tree and walks upright on two legs as human. That takes in a lot of monkeys. Thinking monkeys are human is nonsense to me. Humans to me are Homo Sapien Sapien, the thinking man.


47 posted on 01/22/2012 6:52:29 AM PST by mountainlion (I am voting for Sarah after getting screwed again by the DC Thugs.)
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To: mountainlion

Homo Sapien Sapien? Never heard of that one.


48 posted on 01/22/2012 7:36:40 AM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: SunkenCiv
Homo Sapien Sapien? Never heard of that one.

That is a term for modern man, Humans if you wish.

49 posted on 01/22/2012 7:48:30 AM PST by mountainlion (I am voting for Sarah after getting screwed again by the DC Thugs.)
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To: Deaf Smith

Good one!


50 posted on 01/22/2012 8:09:44 AM PST by 2111USMC (Not a hard man to track. Leaves dead men wherever he goes.)
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