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Mode 2 tool tradition using bifacial handaxes that were made through pressure flaking. The core is the
The ratio between brain and body size; an indicator of intelligence.
The type or definitive specimen for a species.
A phenomenon that occurs when mid-sized or large species become smaller owing to the limited resources of islands.
The nickname given to the fossil specimens that Eugene Dubois discovered in1891 near the village of Trinil in Java. It would later be identified as Homo erectus.
A nickname for a fossil specimen of Homo erectus discovered on Java, Indonesia by Ralph von Koenigswald
A theoretical geographic boundary separating regions with Acheulean tools from regions without.
The nickname given to the fossils of Homo erectus found in China in the region near Zhoukoudian.
A thickening or bulging of the top line of the temporal bone as it approaches the occipital bone at the back.
A thickening of the bone on the part of the jaw near the premolars.
A ridge of bone along the back of the skull on the occipital bone.
The brow ridge or lump of bone above the eye sockets.
The nickname given to a nearly complete specimen of a young Homo erectus from Lake Turkana by Kamoya Kimeu in 1984.
A term used to refer to Homo sapiens who bear some Homo erectus traits. This is not a strictly defined
Mode 4 tool industry associated with Cro-Magnon and the Upper Paleolithic, characterized by blade tools and early artwork.
A nickname for anatomically modern Homo sapiens that were present in Europe during the Upper Paleolithic.A nickname for anatomically modern Homo sapiens that were present in Europe during the Upper Paleolithic.
The tendency to see things only from a European experience, or to privilege a European perspective.
Groups of genetic markers or mutations, or one genetic marker or mutation, inherited together as a unit.
A mandible found in Mauer, Germany that dates between 650,000 and 400,000 years ago. It is called now identified as a Homo heidelbergensis. (
A proposed transitional subspecies between Homo heidelbergensis and anatomically modern Homo sapiens. Based on three crania discovered in the Afar Rift, Ethiopia.
The genetic content that exists outside the nucleus in a relatively short string of nucleotide bases;
it is passed down through maternal lineages.
The hypothetical woman who first bore the mtDNA pattern that all currently living humans share.
Major evolutionary change in a species takes place in stages, with one aspect of the species changing independently of the others. (
Mode 3 tool tradition defined by the Levallois technique, in which a prepared core is used to create carefully shaped flakes
Genes that are passed down from only one parent, the mother in the case of mtDNA and the father in the case of the Y-chromosome.
Mode 1 tool industry characterized by simple core and flake tools.
An earth dye traditionally used by peoples in many locations to decorate their bodies or to create art
Four ancient (380,000400,000 years old) javelin-like wooden spears found in Germany and formed with great technological sophistication.
Sima de los Huesos
A strata in the Gran Dolina cave system in Spain that has produced thousands of fossils, including the largest collection of ancient hominid fossils. Also known as the ‘Pit of Bones’.
Like the mitochondrial Eve, this would be the first male to have the Y-chromosome DNA that all currently living men have.
A social or cultural process through which members of one society pick up the cultural traits of another.
A principle stating that warm-blooded species living in colder climates tend to have shorter limbs and appendages than in warmer climates.
A principle stating that species variants of larger and stockier size are found in the colder parts of the species’ range, while those that are smaller and slenderer are found in the warmer parts of the range.
A Mode-4 tool tradition associated with Neandertal, in evidence especially in central and southwestern France and adjacent parts of northern Spain.
Striations or grooves in the tooth enamel, indicative of periods of time in which the individual has experienced a scarcity of food, some physical trauma, or a disease.
Divje Babe flute
An artifact discovered at the Divje Babe site in Slovenia. Made from the 43,000 year old femur of a bear cub, discoverer Ivan Turk believes that it is a flute created by a Neandertal.
Animals that are capable of maintaining a relatively constant body temperature that doesn’t vary significantly with the temperature surrounding the body; commonly known as ‘warm-blooded’
The first fossil specimen to be called Neandertal; found in the Kleine Feldhofer Grotto in the Neander Valley, Germany, in 1856
The hole in the base of the skull through which the spinal cord passes from the spine to the brain.
The skeleton of a child that is the first contender for being a hybrid human-Neandertal. It was discovered in Portugal and is believed to have lived around 24,500 years ago.
One who studies pollen.
A male Neandertal fossil discovered in Shanidar Cave, Iraq. His skeleton showed that although he was severely disabled, he lived past the age of 30. This suggests that he was cared for by other Neandertals, evidence of Neandertal compassion.
A male Neandertal fossil discovered in Shanidar Cave, Iraq. The skeleton was found in a flexed position, and the surrounding soil contained large amounts of flower pollen. This has been interpreted as a sign that he was buried with flowers.
The indigenous people of Japan
A racial term used to refer to the Aborigines of Australia
Having a high cephalic index, or a short and broad skull.
A subspecies, especially when referring to domesticated animals.
A racial term that is used to refer to the Khoisan Bushmen of southern Africa. (
Denoting or having to do with white- or light- skinned people of European origin
The maximum width of a skull multiplied by 100 and divided by the maximum length of the skull
Having a low cephalic index, or a long skull.
The science of ‘improving’ a population by controlling breeding to increase the occurrence of desirable heritable characteristics.
The rule stating that darker subspecies occur in warmer and/or more humid climates, while light- coloured subspecies are native to cooler and/or drier climates.
Having an intermediate cephalic index, or a skull that is neither very long nor very short.
A racial term used to refer to the people of East Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Arctic areas of North America.
A term used by biologists to identify varieties within a species.
The indigenous or apparent first peoples of Southeast Asia, found in the Andaman Islands, Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines, and New Guinea.
Variation that is not a matter of larger or smaller but of distinctly different traits, such as hair or eye colour. (
The potential of the cranium to change due to environmental conditions, over time.
The period of time in which humans have been described and classified according to race (roughly the last four to five centuries)
The pattern of dental traits said to be characteristic of East Asians and Native Americans; characterized by shovel-shaped incisors.
The generalized pattern of dental traits said to be characteristic of Southeast Asians.
The large land mass that existed during the last glacial period, connecting Siberia and Alaska. It was about 1,000 kilometers
wide from north to south
A theory of the population and settlement of the Americas. The first stage occurred when migrants from Asiareached Beringia, experienced a moderate reduction in genetic variation, and then continued down the west coast of the Americas. The second stage occurred when Asian migrants in Beringia became trapped during the Last Glacial Maximum. A more serious genetic bottleneck occurred, and these people eventually populated the far northern American regions.
The biased interpretation of history presented in the writings of literate peoples when writing about non-literate peoples.
The theory that the Clovis people were the first to settle the
Americas, around 13,000–13,500 years ago.
The theory that the first people to settle in the Americas took a route following the West Coast along shores now underwater
Porous lesions of the orbital roof of the frontal bone.
A situation in which either only a few genetic variants are able to pass through some kind of natural geographic barrier or (more generally) a significant percentage of a geographic population or species is prevented from reproducing.
Items created by nature, not by humans.
A series of huge granite edifices, including a large wall known as the Great Enclosure, built by the ancestors of the Shona people of southern Africa (specifically Zimbabwe) between the thirteenth and fifteenth centuries.
The remains of a skeleton that were discovered along the banks of the Columbia River in 1996, dated to 9,330–9,580 calendar years ago
The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act.
The dense connective tissue that forms a membrane at the outer surface of bones.
A mummy discovered in Nevada in the 1940s, radiocarbon dated to 9,430 ± 60 years ago. The teeth show signs of sinodonty and craniometry suggests similarity to the Ainu.
A significant pre-Clovis site in Chile. A peat bog has allowed many organic materials to be preserved
Name used to refer to one or several of the Aboriginal peoples encountered by Christopher Columbus and the early Spanish visitors to the Caribbean and northern South America; these include the people now known as the Taino.
The reproductive model that defines a species as any population or group of populations capable of interbreeding and producing fertile offspring
An aboriginal group of the Caribbean Islands
A hominid species recently discovered (2004) on the Indonesian islands. H. floresiensis was small, probably around 1 metre tall.
Nonrecombinant Y-chromosome. Genetic elements of the Y-chromosome (the male sex chromosome) that are passed down solely by the father.
The third molars that usually erupt around the age of 18.
An Aboriginal people of the Caribbean and northern South America, whose genetic heritage has recently been identified among supposedly non-Aboriginal people of the area. See also ‘Arawak’.
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