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Age at death of a Late Middle Pleistocene Neandertal mandible from the Coupe-Gorge cave (Montmaurin, France)

Âge au décès d’une mandibule néandertalienne du Pléistocène moyen supérieur de la grotte de Coupe-Gorge (Montmaurin, France)
Nuno Branco, Dany Coutinho Nogueira, Julie Arnaud, Rosa Ramos Gaspar, Cláudia Umbelino et Amélie Vialet

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1In 1950, in Coupe-Gorge cave in Montmaurin (France), at a stratigraphic level dated to the Late Middle Pleistocene (~150ky) a fragmentary mandibular symphysis was discovered. We examined the fossil to estimate its age at death and assessed its taxonomical classification based on mandibular morphology.

2A µ-CT scan was performed on the fossil to study its dental development (the 2 permanent central incisors are included). One reference collection composed of 8 Neandertals was selected, for which there is only one associated µ-CT scan belonging to the Roc de Marsal specimen (retrieved from NESPOS). Another sample, consisting of 24 subadult recent Homo sapiens from the Coimbra Identified Collections and 7 individuals from the New Mexico Decedent Image Database, was selected. Using the TIVMI software, we assessed the teeth of the left side of the mandible. We combined AlQahtani’s London Atlas in tandem with the modified Moorrees and Bengston’s stages for dental development (2010) to estimate the ages at death in the individuals comprising our work. At a later stage, we assessed Neandertal mandibular morphology, focusing on the most well-known traits commonly ascribed to Neandertals. We described the observed features, referring to previous works when necessary, and performed a morphological analysis on the height and breadth of the symphysis. The London Atlas was shown to be suitable for the recent Homo sapiens sample, and it also proved reliable for providing age ranges for the Neandertals, although some cases of overestimation were observed. The age at death in the Coupe-Gorge individual was estimated to be between 3.5 and 4.5 years, falling within the values observed in recent Homo sapiens and encompassing previous estimates. The morphological assessment led us to attribute the specimen to the Homo neanderthalensis taxa, and we observed that the traits that define adult Neandertals emerge and develop gradually from early infancy.

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Référence électronique

Nuno Branco, Dany Coutinho Nogueira, Julie Arnaud, Rosa Ramos Gaspar, Cláudia Umbelino et Amélie Vialet, « Age at death of a Late Middle Pleistocene Neandertal mandible from the Coupe-Gorge cave (Montmaurin, France) »Bulletins et mémoires de la Société d’Anthropologie de Paris [En ligne], 35(S) | 2023, mis en ligne le 14 janvier 2023, consulté le 02 février 2023. URL : http://journals.openedition.org/bmsap/10796 ; DOI : https://doi.org/10.4000/bmsap.10796

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Auteurs

Nuno Branco

Research Centre for Anthropology and Health, Department of Life Sciences, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal
nunohendrikbranco[at]gmail.com

Dany Coutinho Nogueira

Research Centre for Anthropology and Health, Department of Life Sciences, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal

Julie Arnaud

UMR 7194 HNHP, MNHN, CNRS, UPVD, Département Homme et Environnement, Musée de l’Homme, Paris, France ; Sezione Di Scienze Preistoriche e Antropologiche, Dipartimento Di Studi Umanistici, Università Degli Studi Di Ferrara, Ferrara, Italy

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Rosa Ramos Gaspar

Research Centre for Anthropology and Health, Department of Life Sciences, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal ; Centro Hospitalar e Universitário de Coimbra (CHUC), Coimbra, Portugal ; Medical Imaging Department, Centro Hospitalar e Universitário de Coimbra (CHUC), Coimbra, Portugal

Cláudia Umbelino

Research Centre for Anthropology and Health, Department of Life Sciences, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal ; Interdisciplinary Center for Archaeology and Evolution of Human Behaviour (ICArEHB), Faculdade das Ciências Humanas e Sociais, Universidade do Algarve, Faro, Portugal

Amélie Vialet

UMR 7194 HNHP, MNHN, CNRS, UPVD, Département Homme et Environnement, Musée de l’Homme, Paris, France

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CC-BY-NC-ND-4.0

Creative Commons - Attribution - Pas d'Utilisation Commerciale - Pas de Modification 4.0 International - CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

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