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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 44.djvu/640

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THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

sidered it as intermediate between man and the apes, and at last, in order to find some place for it, it was regarded by many as the skull of an idiot. The peculiarities that gave rise to these opinions consist mainly as follows: A long, narrow skull, a low, rapidly retreating forehead, and an exceptional development of the brow ridges (superciliary ridges); these are so prominent that there is a depression behind or between them and the frontal bone. They, moreover, coalesce in the middle line, making a deep depression at the root of the nose. The bones are also unusually thick, the whole configuration remarkable and decidedly apelike and brutal. The other bones found are in keeping with the skull, being thick and characterized by the unusual development of ridges and depressions for attachment of muscles; they would indicate a stature of five feet six to five feet eight inches (1·68 to 1·72 metre). The cranial capacity has been calculated to be 74·43 cubic inches (1,220 cubic centimetres), said to be equal to that of the Malays and superior to that of the Hindus of small stature. The cranial capacity of the most capacious gorilla skull yet measured is thirty-four and a half cubic inches, while the largest human skull had a capacity of one hundred and fourteen cubic inches, the mean European skull being from ninety to ninety-six cubic inches, so that, while in capacity there is a wide difference between the Neanderthal skull and the gorilla skull, there is also a wide difference between it and the European skull. In what is known as the cephalic index this skull does not compare unfavorably with skulls of some existing races. The cephalic index is based upon the proportion between the antero-posterior and transverse diameters of the brain case. It is ascertained by multiplying the transverse diameter by one hundred and dividing the result by the antero-posterior diameter; this result is the cephalic index. When it is less than eighty the skull is said to be dolichocephalic, or long-headed; when more than eighty the skull is brachycephalic, or short-headed. The antero-posterior diameter of the Neanderthal skull is eight inches, the transverse diameter 5·75 inches; the cephalic index is therefore seventy-two, and the skull is dolichocephalic, having an index less than eighty. The mean cephalic index of the existing Eskimos is 69·3. Similar crania have been found in the tufa beds of La Denise, in Auvergne, France; at Eguisheim, in Alsace; and in the lowest gravels of the plain of Grenelle. All these are long-headed, or dolichocephalic, and correspond in other characteristics, but none are so apelike and brutal. It was therefore until recently thought that the Neanderthal man was simply a more pro-