Sorbonne experts confirm fossilized skull found in Iran belongs to Homo sapiens

January 17, 2020 - 18:34

TEHRAN – A team of researches and archaeologists from the Sorbonne University has confirmed a fragment of a fossilized skull, which had been found in an Iranian cave, belongs to Homo sapiens, the only extant human species.

“The Sorbonne University of France has concluded the fragment of a skull, which was found in the historic Kaldar cave near Khorramabad, [the capital of western Lorestan province], is associated with the Homo sapiens through conducting laser 3D scans,” CHTN quoted provincial tourism chief as saying on Thursday.

“Preliminary results of this typology analysis that is being carried out at Copenhagen University in Denmark by the means of physical anatomy, scan results and their interpretation show that fortunately, the fossil belongs to the Homo sapiens (modern, intelligent) species,” Seyyed Amin Qasemi explained.

Kaldar is a key archaeological site that provides evidence of the Middle to Upper Paleolithic transition in Iran. The cave is situated in the western Khorramabad valley and at an elevation of 1,290 meters above sea level. It measures 16 meters long, 17 meters wide and seven meters high.

Excavations at the site in 2014–2015 led to the discovery of cultural remains generally associated with anatomically modern humans (AMHs) and evidence of a probable Neanderthal-made industry in the basal layers.

The research also offers an opportunity to study the technological differences between the Mousterian and the first Upper Paleolithic lithic technologies as well as the human behavior in the region.

The cave has also yielded weapon fragments crafted by Neanderthals. The findings, some of which date from 21,000 to 40,000 years ago, were unveiled during a special ceremony on Saturday in May 2019. Kaldar is a key archaeological site that provides evidence of the Middle to Upper Paleolithic transition in Iran.

In taxonomy, Homo sapiens is the only extant human species. The name is Latin for “wise man” and was introduced in 1758 by Carl Linnaeus (who is himself also the type specimen). Neanderthals are an extinct species or subspecies of archaic humans in the genus Homo, who lived within Eurasia from circa 400,000 until 40,000 years ago.

AFM/MG

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