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      Diaphyseal cross-sectional geometry of the Boxgrove 1 Middle Pleistocene human tibia

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      Journal of Human Evolution

      Elsevier BV

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          Abstract

          Cross-sectional geometric analysis of the early Middle Pleistocene human tibia from Boxgrove, West Sussex, U.K. reveals a mosaic pattern relative to other archaic Homo tibiae. The specimen has relatively low percent cortical area within its cross sections. However, it exhibits the high mediolateral strength characteristic of archaic Homo tibiae. Scaled solely to tibial length it is robust, similar to those of the Neandertals and above those of early modern and pre-Late Pleistocene African and Asian humans. However, given ecogeographically-patterned variance in relative tibial length and body laterality, it is most likely that it exhibits a level of robusticity within the range encompassed by Late Pliocene to Late Pleistocene archaic Homo combined with arctic body proportions. Given its association with late interglacial cool temperate climatic indicators, the inferred body proportions of the Boxgrove hominid were probably promoted by their minimal level of cultural buffering, requiring a significant biological conservation of body heat.

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          Most cited references 37

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          Oxygen isotopes, ice volume and sea level

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            Body mass and encephalization in Pleistocene Homo.

            Many dramatic changes in morphology within the genus Homo have occurred over the past 2 million years or more, including large increases in absolute brain size and decreases in postcanine dental size and skeletal robusticity. Body mass, as the 'size' variable against which other morphological features are usually judged, has been important for assessing these changes. Yet past body mass estimates for Pleistocene Homo have varied greatly, sometimes by as much as 50% for the same individuals. Here we show that two independent methods of body-mass estimation yield concordant results when applied to Pleistocene Homo specimens. On the basis of an analysis of 163 individuals, body mass in Pleistocene Homo averaged significantly (about 10%) larger than a representative sample of living humans. Relative to body mass, brain mass in late archaic H. sapiens (Neanderthals) was slightly smaller than in early 'anatomically modern' humans, but the major increase in encephalization within Homo occurred earlier during the Middle Pleistocene (600-150 thousand years before present (kyr BP)), preceded by a long period of stasis extending through the Early Pleistocene (1,800 kyr BP).
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              Geographical Character Gradients and Climatic Adaptation

               Ernst Mayr (1956)
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Journal of Human Evolution
                Journal of Human Evolution
                Elsevier BV
                00472484
                July 1999
                July 1999
                : 37
                : 1
                : 1-25
                Article
                10.1006/jhev.1999.0295
                10375475
                © 1999

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