Neanderthals mind map
Recent discoveries
Oldest known Neanderthal cave engravings discovered
Study casts doubt on Neanderthal 'flower burial' theory
Speech capabilities
Study on bone structure in skulls
Digital reconstruction of bones
Findings suggest capacity to hear and produce human-like speech
Homo neanderthalensis
Distinct human species
Closest ancient human relatives
Shared common ancestor with Homo sapiens
Evolutionary history
Earliest Neanderthal-like fossils around 430,000 years old
Best-known Neanderthals lived between 130,000 and 40,000 years ago
Physical characteristics
Long, low skull with prominent brow ridge
Adapted to cold environments
Short limbs and torso for heat conservation
Wide noses for warming and humidifying air
Similar appearance to modern humans
Adaptable to different environments
Cold steppe environments in England and Siberia about 60,000 years ago
Warm temperate woodlands in Spain and Italy about 120,000 years ago
Social complexity suggests ability to communicate
Genetic makeup
Several Neanderthal genomes reconstructed from ancient DNA
Modern humans have inherited around 2% Neanderthal DNA
Tools and technology
Made and used diverse set of sophisticated tools
Controlled fire
Made and wore clothing
Skilled hunters of large animals
Made symbolic or ornamental objects
Deliberately buried their dead
Marked graves with offerings
Extinction theories
Climate change
Aggression of Homo sapiens
Competition for resources
Interbreeding with Homo sapiens

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