Did Neanderthals make the Châtelperronian assemblage from La Grotte du Renne (Arcy-sur-Cure, France)?

  • S. E. Bailey
  • J. J. Hublin
Part of the Vertebrate Paleobiology and Paleoanthropology book series (VERT)

Much debate has focused on the significance of the “modern” cultural elements found in European Late Middle Paleolithic (Châtelperronian, Uluzzian, and Szeletian) contexts. In light of evidence suggesting cultural interaction between the makers of these industries and the makers of the Aurignacian (presumably anatomically modern humans) it is imperative that the taxonomic affiliation of the hominins associated with these “transitional” industries be accurately identified. The fossil remains from the Châtelperronian levels (VIII-X) at the Grotte du Renne (Arcy-sur-Cure, France) comprise a series of isolated teeth, as well as a child’s temporal bone. While the temporal bone has been analyzed (and identified as having Neanderthal affinity), most of the 29 teeth from these levels have not been described. The Châtelperronian dental remains from the Grotte du Renne comprise both permanent and deciduous teeth. Fortunately, most are well preserved and relatively unworn. Simple dental dimensions are not par-ticularly helpful in attempts to differentiate between Neanderthals and anatomically modern humans. The dimen-sions of the postcanine teeth in these two groups overlap completely. However, Neanderthals are known to have larger anterior teeth (on average), especially relative to their postcanine tooth size. Not surprisingly, we find that the crown dimensions for the postcanine teeth from the Grotte du Renne fall within the ranges of both hominin groups.


Neanderthal remains fossil teeth dental morphology Late Middle Paleolithic 


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Copyright information

© Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. E. Bailey
    • 1
    • 2
  • J. J. Hublin
    • 1
  1. 1.Abteilung für HumanevolutionMax-Planck-Institut für Evolutionäre AnthropologieLeipzigGermany
  2. 2.Center for the Study of Human Origins Department of AnthropologyNew York UniversityNew YorkUSA

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