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Copernicus Festival. Rehabilitation Neanderthal


A few years ago, still one of the most interesting stock Rehabilitation in the history of our species. It concerns our closest relatives – the Neanderthals.

For decades, both beginners as well as professionals, the Neanderthals as a people, “the worse your cheap novel……”, robbed, and cultural intelligence, manners. Manifestation of these universal beliefs, the use of the word “Neanderthal” as an insult, bliskoznacznej was cattle “a piece” or “prymitywowi”. Against the mental abilities of Neanderthals and testified to her appearance: кремпа Silhouette with a slightly curved limbs, as well as a thick, elongated skull, with wound of the forehead back and wyeksponowanym brwiowym onions. It is the individuals were, actually, similar to the Greek philosophers.

The skull of the first man recognized as the Neanderthal was discovered in 1856. in the valley of neander in Germany. Several years passed before the geologist William King have a hunch that it is a separate type of Person is one of those whose existence we call out recently, the theory of Charles Darwin. King drew the attention on primitive anatomical features of the skull resembles, in some respects, skull contemporaries monkeys. Soon it was found more fossils неандертальскими – also in the museums of natural history (previously, these samples were considered, people with various diseases). On the first almost complete skeleton of a Neanderthal man, you must wait until the beginning of the twentieth century. In 1908, the three French priests, threw him in a shallow grave in one of the caves. From the location of the finds, called this sample the Old man of La Chapelle.

And here the Old man in the highest degree contributed involuntarily to the creation of the myth of “primitive Neanderthal”. The trial soon fell into the hands of the Director of the Paris Museum of natural history, Marcellina Buhl. And this was not only a detailed anatomical description, enriched with stereoskopowymi illustrations, but in temptation, the research on the characteristic of intellectual abilities of Neanderthals were. He wrote, among other things, so:

No more than weak-minded or zwyrodniałej Form of work than is our man mustierski [neandertalski]… [P]rymitywny nature of this dynamic, and such an unusual body, skull with strong jaw… are proof of the advantages of the purely vegetative or animal qualities about the functions of the mind.

Bull had, of course, judge no scientific basis to draw such conclusions on the basis of the shape of the skull is very difficult to, on the intellectual qualities of its owner. In addition, as the French researcher was of the imagination, by the fact that you speculated in your essays, it is that of the Neanderthals, as well as the monkeys, and different as the people, had the harmful boy-with-Finger. So, an excellent anatomist, as the Boule is not wrong, indeed, banal in the assessment of the fossil was missing in the body of the Old man of La Chapelle bones of the legs. And this primitive feature liked Буль’Ari for his holistic view on the way of life and the behavior of the Neanderthals.

The years passed, and the myth of the primitive mental abilities of Neanderthals, popularized extremely influential Boule, cheated in the study, where przesiąkał for the pop-culture. It is a myth, conveniently – there is speculation that it could be responsible for the deficit of the intellectuals for what we live in today and the Neanderthals became extinct.

Today, thanks to advances палеоантропология but we know that Neanderthals did not differ particularly from us at an angle, the biology and the culture. Intentionally buried the dead, krzesali fire, cooked medium, and jewelry, were produced glue from birch bark, and dyes, and my diet adapted to the local conditions. This life in the woods, hunted in a variety of sizes of mammals and birds, which have acquired in the higher layers of large animals, and those of the coast, a considerable part of the resources in the sea. Took care of old and zniedołężniałych, treats diseases (used, in particular, salicylic acid component, Aspirin – speaker in the poplar, as well as mold, which is a natural antibiotic). They even have their art. Biologically could be, and very different, since there are always crossed with us, we find that the traces in our genome.

Until a few decades ago, the few scientists that everything is your podejrzewało. One of the exceptions to Ralf Солецкого, an American of Polish origin, the management of the excavations, in particular, in the cave Szanidar in Iraq. In his books, about the valuable title of “April people” and “the humanity of Neanderthal man,” wrote about her “passion for beauty”, she admitted “the full range of human emotions”, and even assured that “the soul”.

Today, more and more scientists and popularizers of science are agreed that closer to the truth was Солецкого, but not Boule. On the basis of archaeological excavations of the last years, we can see that 100-60 thousand years ago, at an angle, the technology and the culture of the Neanderthals is not the way of the Homo sapiens. Soon, however, fossils of Neanderthals is lost. And although we don’t know exactly why it happened, we can’t be sure that they died out completely, without an heir. A part of your genes lives on in us.

Author: Onion Flower

Text created in collaboration with the COPERNICUS FESTIVAL.

Copernicus Festival is an event whose goal is the popularization of science and the philosophy, the explanation of their influence on the social life and show the different relations between them and the other areas of culture, including literature and art. This year, in connection with the pandemic koronawirusa, meet with the speakers and into the net were transferred. The Motto of this edition of the Copernicus Festival is the time.