Museum Exhibit: Homo Sapiens Neanderthalensis: Neanderthal Man
by: Nicholas Hilbert
Homo Sapiens Neanderthalensis: Neanderthal Man
It had thick bones and a ridge above the eyes, but was also very humanlike.
Neanderthals had large brains. They used their intelligence to become skilled toolmakers. More than 60 types of Neanderthal tools have been found. These tools required much more planning, skill, and knowledge than the tools made by earlier hominids. Neanderthals created knives, scrapers, and spear points. They learned how to make sharp, thin blades by breaking off the top of a rock and then chipping two or three sharp flakes from the original piece.
What did Wise Man do?
The ability to make better tools improved Neanderthals’ chances for survival. But their ability to work together helped even more. Neanderthals lived and traveled in groups. And they were the first early hominids to hunt in an organized group.Scientists believe that Neanderthals may have had a sense of community. When members of a group died, their bodies were laid in burial mounds, along with hunting tools and flowers. This is a clue that Neanderthals cared about one another and had a sense of ritual.When on a hunt, Neanderthals worked together to surround and trap an animal. Then they would close in and kill it with spears.Evidence suggests that if some hunters were injured, other group members would help them.