jeudi 4 février 2016

Medieval Italian Neanderthal?

1) Those REAL Old Jamborees ... , 2) Did Noah suffer like Winston - undefeated?, 3) Medieval Italian Neanderthal?

From CMI today:

More recently it was also revealed that bones and teeth found in San Bernardino Cave, Italy, which had been classified as belonging to Homo neanderthalensis in rock layers thought to be 28,000–59,000 years old, were misidentified and have now been reclassified as belonging to a Medieval Italian male living in the 1400s!


Benazzi, S., et al., A reassessment of the presumed Neandertal remains from San Bernardino Cave, Italy, J Hum Evol. 66:89-94, 2014 | doi: 10.1016/j.jhevol.2013.09.009;, searching which I found it on : Benazzi, S., Peresani, M., Talamo, S., Fu, Q., Mannino, M.A., Richards, M.P., Hublin, J.-J. (2014) A reassessment of the presumed Neandertal remains from San Bernardino Cave, Italy. Journal of Human Evolution. 66:89-94.

Here is the abstract:

In 1986-1987, three human remains were unearthed from macro-unit II of San Bernardino Cave (Berici Hills, Veneto, Italy), a deposit containing a late Mousterian lithic assemblage. The human remains (adistal phalanx, a lower right third molar and a lower right second deciduous incisor) do not showdiagnostic morphological features that could be used to determine whether they were from Homo neanderthalensis or Homo sapiens. Despite being of small size, and thus more similar to recent H. sapiens,the specimens were attributed to Neandertals, primarily because they were found in Mousterian layers. We carried out a taxonomic reassessment of the lower right third molar (LRM3; San Bernardino 4) using digital morphometric analysis of the root, ancient DNA analysis, carbon and nitrogen isotope analyses,and direct accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) radiocarbon dating of dentine collagen. Mitochondrial DNA analysis and root morphology show that the molar belongs to a modern human and not to a Neandertal. Carbon 14 (14C) dating of the molar attributes it to the end of the Middle Ages (1420-1480 cal AD, 2 sigma). Carbon and nitrogen isotope analyses suggest that the individual in question hada diet similar to that of Medieval Italians. These results show that the molar, as well as the other two human remains, belong to recent H. sapiens and were introduced in the Mousterian levels post-depositionally.

© 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

So the previous identification of a Neanderthal living 28 to 59 thousand years ago had nothing to do with radiocarbon dating?

Not directly. Perhaps some "early" Mousterian have been radiocarbon dated as 59 thousand years ago. And perhaps some "late" Mousterian have been radiocarbon dated as 28 thousand years ago - but once this is done, Mousterian is diagnosed on what the deposits look like.

Note that the limit dates for Mousterian are what CMI have sometimes said are acceptable carbon dates for deposits from Flood - this means Mousterian culture might be a pre-Flood stone age.

Other indications of "Stone age" Neanderthals being pre-Flood is that Neanderthal mitochondrial DNA differs from that of "modern man". However, the mitochondrial DNA of the three daughters-in-law of Noah should be the one we have now, that meaning they did not have mitochondrial DNA of Neanderthal type. And this means any Neanderthal implication in tribe of Japheth and Sem more than that of Ham would mean that Mrs Japheth had a Neanderthal father, and a non-Neanderthal mother, Mrs Sem too, but perhaps less so.

Since the pre-Flood scenario for pre-historic certainly human stone age remains cannot be "post-Flood Gilligan's Island scenario", this leaves us with two possibilities for the situation of Neanderthals in pre-Flood world, if using Mousterian technology.

  • 1) the one implied by the recent film Noah is that pre-Flood culture was generally a stone age one;
  • 2) one other I have suggested in a post here I am linking back to: stone age people could have been in penitential colonies or some kind of "boy scouts on jamborees" type of voluntary self privation of technological assets.

Supposing Europe was used as some kind of Gulag or New South Wales, and supposing Noah chose the wives for his sons in the last moment, it might make sense, seeing he was facing some kind of Gilligan's Island scenario, to choose at least one or two wives for sons from people having known technological privations.

But perhaps "28 to 59 thousand years ago" for Mousterian has nothing to do with carbon dating, it is all non-carbon methods (all of which are less reliable)?

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
St Andrea Corsini

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