Frontal Bone

Middle Palaeolithic, Mousterian, 100,000-30,000 BC.

Museo Arqueológico de Granada

Museo Arqueológico de Granada
Granada, Spain

This hominid fossil corresponds, due to its physical characteristics, to the frontal bone of a child of a late Neanderthal or classic European type. These characteristics are: the great thickness of the bones, the developed supraorbital torus, the quadrangular ocular orbits and quite a wide space between these. In addition to the frontal bone, two fragments from the parietal region belonging to an adult Neanderthal human were excavated. The Cueva de la Carigüela is located around 600 metres from Piñar, in the region of Montes Orientales, Granada. This site has been known of since the first decades of the 20th century. The stratigraphy of the cave displays continuous sedimentation from the end of the Middle Pleistocene, 145,000 BC, until the Bronze Age, 1,900 BC The most well known stage is the Middle Paleolithic (145,000 - 29,000 BC), which is the longest sequence in this period found in the Peninsula and one of the most detailed known. During this period, the Neanderthals frequently went to the cave and left not only their lithic instruments there (the so-called Mousterian industry), but also the remains of animals which they ate and other evidence of their various activities, supplying information about their ways of life during the first half of the last glaciation. In addition, when the cave was not inhabited, hyenas, wolves and leopards would use it as a den, adding the fragments from their prey to the bones abandoned by the Neanderthals. Predators most likely introduced the human remains in the cave found at its Pleistocene levels, the most important of which is this fragment from a Homo neanderthalensis infant`s frontal bone.


  • Title: Frontal Bone
  • Date Created: Middle Palaeolithic, Mousterian, 100,000-30,000 BC.
  • Location: Cave of La Carigüela. Piñar. Granada.
  • Type: Human bones
  • Medium: Bone

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