32. On theMammal-faunaof theCavesofCreswell Crags. By Prof. W. Boyd Dawkins, Esq., M.A., F.R.S., F.G.S., F.S.A., Professor of Geology and Palaeontology in the Owens College. (Read April 11, 1877.)
II. The fauna of the Robin Hood Cave.
A. Distribution of Pleistocene Species.
B. Palæolithic Man.
D. Artiodactyla, Perissodactyla, Proboscidea. and Rodentia.
E. Remains of Historic and Prehistoric (?) Age.
III. The Fauna of the Church-Hole Cave.
A. Distribution of Pleistocene Species.
B. Palæolithic Man.
C. Historic Remains.
D. Robin-Hood and Church-Hole Caves occupied by British Welsh Refugees.
IV. Condition of Fossil remains in Creswell Caves.
V. General Conclusions as to Pleistocene Fauna.
A. No Cave-fauna proved to be Pre- or Interglacial.
B. No proof of Pre- or Interglacial Cave-Man in Britain.
C. The Palæolithic Man of Creswell of late Pleistocene age.
The exploration of the caves of Creswell Crags carried on by the Rev. J. M. Mello, F.G.S., in 1875, and brought before the Society in that and the following year, was finally concluded last summer; and the results have been handed over to me, by the Committee, for description—a task of no little difficulty, from the vast numbers of the fossil remains which have been discovered. The results are of considerable importance, not merely because they confirm the conclusions which were arrived at from the previous explorations, but because they add new facts to the history of palæolithic man in Britain. In dealing with these the Robin-Hood Cave will be taken first; and then I shall check the evidence which it offers by that furnished by the cavern on the other side of the ravine of Creswell Crags known as the Church Hole. It must, however be remarked that the history of both these caverns is rendered imperfect from the promiscuous diggings carried on by unauthorized persons, the results of which have not been brought before the Committee.
II. The Robin-Hood Cave.
A. Distribution of Species in the Lower and Middle Strata.
In the description of the remains from the Robin-Hood Cave in this Journal (August 1876, p. 245), attention was drawn to the fact that the cave was inhabited by hyænas during the time of the deposition of the red sand below, the cave-earth, and the breccia above, and that no traces of man were found below the cave-earth. The late exploration confirms the hyæna-occupation; but it proves also that man was living in the neighbourhood at the time when the red sands and clays were being deposited on the unfossiliferous grey sand which covered the rocky floor (see preceding sections).
The breccia of the previous exploration turned out to be a mere local deposit, which was represented in other parts of the cave by the upper strata of cave-earth. Consequently, in the following list of the vertical range of the animals in the cave, I have classified it with the cave-earth, with which also is included the mottled stratum noted in Mr. Mello's sections, which does not seem to me to differ in any important degree from the cave-earth. The specimens from the superficial deposits above the stalagmite will be reserved for separate treatment.
The following Table shows the distribution of the animals in the Pleistocene strata.
From this Table it is evident that the animals were, on the whole, more rare during the deposit of the red sand below than during the time of the accumulation above it, the proportion of remains in each being as 156 : 3610.
The remains of the animals were also, on the whole, more perfect in the red sand than in the cave-earth, and not so much gnawed by the hyænas.
We may also observe that here, as in Wookey Hole, hyænas, rhinoceroses, horses, and reindeer are most abundant among the lower animals; while the traces of man, represented mainly by flint and quartzite implements, being practically indestructible, stand at the head of the list.
B. Palæolithic Man.
The implements and ornaments left behind by palæolithic man amount to a number of no less than 1040, all of which, with the exception of a few of the trimmed flakes and the incised figure of a horse engraved on a fragment of rib, are of the simplest forms, and of the types which I have already described in my former paper. The conclusion thus arrived at, that the rude implements of quartzite were used by the hunters before the more carefully finished implements of flint, is thoroughly borne out by this exploration; for although the absence of the breccia in which most of the more finely worked implements were met with in 1875 rendered the definition of the horizon of flint from that of the quartzite less distinct than before, we observed that, on the whole, the flints were found in the upper part of the cave-earth, while the quartzite implements were mainly found in the lower portion. The latter also ranged downwards, as may be seen from the following Table, into the lower red sand and clay, while the former did not.
Distribution of Traces of Palæolithic Man in Robin-Hood Cave, 1876.
The most important discovery of the handiwork of man is the head and fore quarters of a horse (fig. 1) incised on a smoothed and rounded fragment of rib, cut short off at one end and broken at the other. On the flat side the head is represented with the nostrils and mouth and neck carefully drawn. A series of fine oblique lines show that the animal was hog-maned. They stop at the bend of the back, which is very correctly drawn. Indeed the whole is very well done and is evidently a sketch from the life. As is usually the case, the feet are not represented.
On comparing this engraving with those of horses from the caves of Périgord and from the recently described cave of the Kesslerloch, near Thayingen, in Switzerland, the identity of style renders the conclusion tolerably certain that the palæolithic hunters who occupied the Creswell cave during the accumulation of the upper part of the cave-earth were the same as those who hunted the Reindeer and Horse in Switzerland and the south of France.
A bone awl was also found, composed of the metacarpal of a Reindeer, and carefully rounded and smoothed; it had been broken into three pieces before it was thrown away. By a fortunate chance I found two out of the three fragments.
The pointed antlers may have been used by man; but they may also be the result of the action of carbonic acid in wearing away the bruised surfaces, as we shall presently see.
Of the flint implements it is only necessary to say that they are
all of the types which I have described, with two exceptions, the one
being an oval trimmed flake, and the other a double scraper of the
The quartzite implements are of the forms already described: and same form as those of the caves of Southern France and of the Kesslerloch.
of those made of clay iron-stone, only one demands special notice. It is a small oval implement of the St.-Acheul and Moustier type, blunt at the base and tapering to a rounded point (fig. 2).
The numerous split quartzite pebbles are of the same sort as those recently described by Captain Jones, U. S. A., as being in use among the American Indians of Wyoming. He writes, "Certain articles of a very rude character are still in use to some extent among our western Indians, and even in the case of such tribes as have now
Fig. 2.—Ironstone implement, Robin Hood Cave, 1/1.
entirely discarded the implements of stone and bone, relics of such materials are not uncommonly found in graves which cannot be regarded as ancient. The Shoshones, though mostly provided with tools of iron and steel of approved patterns, are still to be seen employing as a scraper in the dressing of skins a mere 'teshoa,' consisting of a small worn boulder, thinner at one end, split through the middle in such a manner as to furnish a rough cutting-edge at one side. There seems to be a considerable advantage in this over any form of knife or other tool which has yet reached them from without; and it is probable that it will be retained so long as their present method of preparing hides is in vogue". Probably those of the Robin-Hood Cave were put to the same use.
A fragment of "red raddle" from the cave-earth had probably been used for painting.
The large number of splinters in the cave proves that it was used by the hunters as a place of resort for a considerable time, and that they brought the raw material along with them, and made their cutting-tools as they were wanted, on the spot. The numerous broken bones prove that they were in the habit of breaking bones for the sake of the marrow, after the fashion of many savage tribes at the present day. The obtusely pointed quartzite choppers would be admirably adapted for that purpose. Fragments of charcoal and calcined bone show also that the game was roasted inside the cave.
C. Order Carnivora.
Fig. 3. Upper canine of Machairodus, Robin-Hood Cave, 1/1.
Machairodus.—The discovery of the incised drawing of a palæolithic Horse is rivalled in value by that of the rare animal Machairodus (fig. 3) in the same stratum at a short distance away. On July 3, while I happened to be superintending the work, one of our men dug out, before my eyes, the crown of a fine upper canine quite perfect. It lay about one foot below the stalagmite in the cave-earth; and in association with it were a fine flint flake and remains of Bear, Woolly Rhinoceros, Reindeer, Horse, and Mammoth.
The length of the crown measures 2⋅6 inches as compared with specimens of the same tooth from other localities; and it is of the same broad form as those from Kent's Hole and that which I examined in 1873 in the Museum of Lyons, which was discovered at Chagny, near Dijon, in association with the Horse, Beaver, Mastodon arvernensis, Ursus etruscus, Hyæna antiqua (?), and three species of Cervus. The base of the crown measures 1⋅25, while the tape measurement from the base of the fang to the much-worn stump of the crown, is 4⋅2 inches. This specimen is of peculiar value, because it proves that the Machairodus latidens is a variety or species that lived in France in, the Pliocene age. Taken in connexion with similar discoveries in Kent's Hole, the Creswell example implies that the Machairodus was a survival from the Pliocene into the Pleistocene age, like the Rhinoceros hemitœchus, the Horse, and the Elephas antiquus, and into that later stage which is marked by the presence of large herds of Reindeer in this country. The tooth was probably introduced into the cave by the hand of man, since it is broken short off by a sharp blow, and is without marks of the teeth of hyænas; a few scratches at its base may have been made by a flint flake. Its singular shape and sharp, serrated cutting-edges would certainly strike the fancy of any rude huntsman who might be fortunate enough to meet with the carcass or skeleton of its possessor, or who might have had the rare luck to kill so formidable an animal. Indeed, that this tooth attracted attention in ancient times, we have evidence in a specimen in the Museum at Florence, found in an Etruscan tomb, and which may be fairly taken to be the earliest example of fossil-collecting within the historic period. It was derived from the Pliocene of the Val d'Arno. Whether, however, the Creswell tooth was collected or not, its mineral condition agreeing with that of the other associated teeth forbids the supposition that it was obtained from the Forest-bed, or from any Pliocene strata on the Continent, in which the remains, so far as I have yet seen, are in a totally different state of preservation and of a different colour. As the evidence stands, it is in favour of the animal having been a contemporary of man in the neighbourhood.
The Lion (Felis spelæa).—A canine, a lower true molar, a gnawed tibia, and 8 bones of the feet, belong to the Lion. The following measurements of metatarsal bones compared with those given by Mr. Sanford and myself in the monograph on Felis spelæa (Palæont. Soc. part 1, p. 25) imply that the animal was intermediate, in point of size, between the large variety of the caves and the smaller form now prevailing in Africa and India.
The Leopard (F. pardus).—One ectocuneiform from the cave-earth is undistinguishable from that of a Leopard. It is far too large to be identified with any of the smaller Pleistocene felines, and too small to match with that of any of the fossil or recent Lions, as may be seen by comparing the measurements below with those in part 1, p. 18, of 'British Pleistocene Mammalia' (Palæont. Soc).
The Wild Cat (Felis catus ferus). Three lower jaws from the Cave-earth and one from the stratum above the stalagmite belong to the Wild Cat. One is remarkable for its massive character and large size, in which points it far surpasses any of the recent Wild Cat's with which I have had the opportunity of comparing it. The thickening of the inner alveolar border, and the implantation of the molar series in the outer edge, prove that this feline does not belong to the Felis caffer described by Mr. Sanford and myself in the Palseontographical Society's Memoirs ("British Pleistocene Mammalia," part iv. p. 121). The rest are also larger than the recent Wild Cat's, as may be seen by the following Table of measurements (in inches):—
The Spotted Hyæna (H. crocuta).—The remains of the Spotted
Hyænas consist principally of jaws and teeth of all ages; and those
from the Cave-earth are, for the most part, in fragments.
Two skulls, a scapula, and a cervical vertebra were obtained from the Red Sand. On a comparison of the two skulls with those of the recent H. crocuta in the College of Surgeons, which belonged to the collection made by Captain Gordon Cumming in S. Africa, I am unable to detect any points of specific value. If any thing, the larger of the two fossil skulls, possessing the sutures and teeth of the adult, is smaller than the larger of the two recent, as may be seen from the following measurements (in inches):—
Both these fossil skulls have been gnawed by Hyænas; and the smaller is so mutilated that it offers no measurements of value.
The large number of teeth and jaws from the caves of Creswell, amounting altogether to 1096 and 99 respectively (Robin-Hood 812 and 53; Church Hole 284 and 46), offers a wide basis of induction for the determination of the amount of variation in the teeth of the fossil Hyæna of the caves. So far as relates to their form, I have nothing to add to the essay on the dentition published in the 'Natural-History Review,' in 1865, which was founded mainly on the large stores of remains furnished by the cavern of Wookey Hole. The extremes of size, however, are greater, as may be seen from the comparison of the following measurements (in inches) with those of the above essay.
The spelæan teeth, as may be observed from the figures given above, are, on the whole, larger than those of the Spotted Hyæna which are in our museums; but the minimum measurements of the former fall within the maximum measurements of the latter. I am unable to detect any differences of form between the two which are constant. They are related to each other in the same manner as those of the spelæan are related to those of the living Lions.
The articulation of the scapula measures 2 x 2⋅5; and the circumference of the neck is 4⋅5 inches.
In reviewing the whole evidence at my command as to the relation of the Cave-hyæna to the living Spotted Hyæna (B. crocuta), I am unable to recognize any constant differences, and therefore believe them to be specifically identical.
Fox (Canis vulpes), Wolf (Canis lupus).—The remains of the Fox and Wolf offer no points worthy of special notice.
Bear (Ursus ferox? U. arctos?).—The remains of Bear, consisting of two jaws, 39 teeth, and 32 bones, belong to young adults and very old individuals. Some of the teeth agree with those of the Grizzly Bear as defined by Prof. Busk (Trans. Royal Soc. 1872, p. 532 et seq.), while others agree closely in size and form with those of the Ursus arctos. I am unable to lay hold of characters by which these closely allied forms, both recent and fossil, are distinguished, so far as relates to their dentition; and I feel inclined to hold the view, lately taken by Mr. J. A. Allen, that the two living forms (U. arctos and U. ferox) in North America are merely varieties "or subspecies" of one species.
D. Orders Artiodactyla, Perissodactyla, Proboscidea, and Rodentia.
The remains of the Reindeer, Bison, and Irish Elk merit no special attention. It may, however, be remarked that of the teeth of the first of these, amounting to 200, eleven are milk-molars, two being deciduous molar 2. We may also observe the absence of the Stag, which is, as a rule, very rare in the Pleistocene caves of this country, while in the prehistoric deposits it is very abundant. In the early Pleistocene, as, for example, in the Lower Brickearths of the Thames Valley, the animal abounded in Britain. It retreated before the advance of the Reindeer as the temperature became lowered, and it did not again appear in force till after the close of the Pleistocene age.
Woolly Rhinoceros.—The adult Woolly Rhinoceros is represented by 145 teeth, the young by 108. All these but three were discovered near the cave-earth.
Horse.—Most of the teeth of Horses belong to adults; but 29 milk-teeth prove that the colts were also present.
On comparing the limb-bones with those of a Shetland pony and the racehorse "Orlando" in the College of Surgeons, it is evident that the animal to which they belonged was about the size of a stout cob-horse, being considerably larger than the former, and falling short of the stature of the latter. The horse, however, of the Pleistocene age varied considerably in size. In the museum at Lyons a skeleton, set up from the remains found at Solutré, is not taller than that of a middle-sized pony; and the remains found in the cave at Shandon are considered by Prof. Leith Adams, F.R.S., to belong to animals about 14 hands high.
The spelæan bones measured (in inches) belong to the limbs of two individuals which fell a prey to the Hyænas, and by a rare chance were not destroyed by their teeth. They were found in the Red Sand.
Mammoth.—The Woolly Elephant is represented by 8 teeth and fragments belonging to adults, and by 38 teeth and fragments belonging to the young. The three oldest and largest teeth are first true molars.
The remains of the Hare and the Water-vole demand no special notice, excepting that the numerous broken bones of the former show that it was an important article of food with the palaæolithic inhabitants of the cave during the accumulation of the upper Cave-earth and the breccia.
E. Remains of Historic and Prehistoric (?) Age.
The superficial layer in the cave, which in some places rested on the stalagmite and in others on the upper Cave-earth, and was nowhere more than a few inches in thickness, contained the same group of objects as that from the upper strata in the Victoria Cave. They consist of the following:—
1. A harp-shaped Romano-British brooch, adorned with blue diamonds of enamel, flanked by red triangles, of the exact size and form of that figured in my work on 'Cave-hunting' from the Victoria Cave (coloured plate, fig. 1). The two are so alike that I have no doubt that they were turned out of the same workshop.
2. A flat lamina of bronze pierced at one end for suspension, and at the other prolonged into two points which may have been used as fixed compasses. It is an implement of the same kind as that figured in 'Cave-hunting' from the Victoria Cave (coloured plate, fig. 2).
3. The boss of the hilt of a sword or dagger carved out of the head of the femur of Horse or Ox, and ornamented with concentric circles which may have been made with number 2.
4. A fragment of Samian ware, and many fragments of grey lathe-turned pottery of the usual Romano-British type, such as that found in abundance at the Romano-British cemeteries of Hardham and Seaford in Sussex.
5. A whetstone. Numerous broken bones of animals which had been used for food.
6. A few human teeth, human vertebræ, a fragment of a femur, of an ulna, and a few bones of the extremites were also met with.
7. The remains of the animals imply a mixture of wild and domestic species, as may be seen in the following Table:—
Prehistoric (?) and Historic Fauna of Robin-Hood Cave, 1876.
We may remark that the condition of the remains of the Dog show that it was used for food as well as for the chase.
This group of remains belongs to the historic period, as established by the Romano-British pottery and enamelled brooch.
Three small fragments of pottery, black in colour, and with little fragments of limestone imbedded in its paste, are of the same sort as that generally found in Neolithic deposits, and are unlike any Romano-British pottery which I have seen. They may imply that the cave was used as a shelter by Neolithic tribes as well as by Palæolithic hunters and Romano-British refugees.
A flint strike-a-light, triangular in form, and of uncertain date, was also obtained, as well as two leaden pistol-bullets and an iron ring, which it is unnecessary to notice.
The remains of the following Mollusca have been specifically identified by Mr. Thomas Kelsall, of the Manchester Museum:—
The general conclusions relating to the fauna of the Robin-Hood Cave will be deferred until that of the Church Hole has been brought before the Society.
III. The Fauna of the Church-Hole Cave.
A. Distribution of Species in Pleistocene Strata.
In dealing with the distribution of the fossil remains in the Church Hole, I have adopted the same divisions as in the Robin-Hood Cave, those from the Red Sand being classified together, while those from the strata above, as far as the stalagmite, are ranked under a second head. The most important deduction to be made from the following Table is, that while the association of remains is similar to that in the Robin-Hood Cave, the remains in the Red Sand are more abundant and, it may be added, in a more fragmentary state. The Hyænas were present in greater force during the earlier stage in the history of this than in that of the above-mentioned cave.
The last column in the above Table represents the species found by Mr. Mello in 1875.
B. Palæolithic Man.
Human implements of various sorts were met with in intimate association with the fossil animals in all the deposits under the stalagmite; and large quantities of broken bones testified to the presence of Man, just as the gnawed bones proved that of the Hyænas in the cave. In the strata above the Red Sand there were fragments of charcoal and of calcined bone.
As may be seen from the following Table of distribution of works of Man, there is the same distinction to be observed here as in the Robin-Hood Cave between the implements of the upper and lower strata. From the former were obtained all the implements of bone, antler, and flint; while in the latter we only discovered a few implements of the rudest kind, made of quartzite.
Articles of Bone and Antler.—The articles made of bone are as follows:—
1. A well-shaped needle (fig. 4), absolutely perfect, made out of a metacarpal or tarsal bone of a ruminant, and larger than any of those figured from the palæolithic caves of France, Belgium, or Switzerland.
Fig. 4.—Bone Needle, Church-Hole Cave, 1/1.
Fig. 5.—Bone Awl, Church-Hole Cave, 1/1.
Fig. 7.—Rod of Reindeer Antler, Church-Hole Cave, 1/1.
Fig. 6.—Notched Bone, Church-Hole Cave, 1/1.
Fig. 8.—Flake worn on one side, Church-Hole Cave. 2. Two bone awls (fig. 5) fashioned out of the tibiæ of a Hare, and polished by long-continued use.
3. A broad spatulate fragment (fig. 6) of the distal portion of the transverse process of one of the lumbar vertebræ either of a Horse or large ruminant, rounded at the end and with its edges notched. It closely resembles the "bone knife-like implement notched and scored" from the Grotte de la Gorge d'Enfer, figured in the 'Reliquiæ Aquitanicæ' (B, pl. xxv. fig. 2, pp. 183 et seq.). In our specimen, however, the notches are deeper and wider apart.
4. Two carefully rounded rods made of antler, with one of their extremities traversed by a deep lateral groove (fig. 7), and the other broken short off, may have been spear-heads, in which case the groove would be for the reception of the tapering end of the shaft. They are of the same form as the basal portions of those from the cave of the Kesslerloch, considered by Dr. Merk to be spear-heads (op. cit. figs. 16, 20, 26). A third cylinder of antler, rounded like the above, resembles the one from Cro-Magnon, figured in the 'Reliquiæ Aquitanicæ' (B, pl. xii.).
3. Articles of Flint and Quartzite.—Among the stone implements the only two forms worthy of notice are those presented by three flakes, two of which have one of their edges straight, sharp, and unworn, while the other is worn to a curve (fig. 8). This is doubtless due, as Mr. Evans has suggested in his 'Ancient Stone Implements,' to the sharp edge having been imbedded in a handle of some perishable material, either wood, like some of the flakes from the neolithic pile-dwellings of Switzerland, or horn, which would speedily be destroyed (see dotted outline in fig. 8). The second form is that of an awl, consisting of a flake with the end chipped to a point and well worn by friction.
The following list represents the distribution of the palæolithic implements in the cave:—
Distribution of Traces of Palæolitliic Man in Church-Hole Cave, 1876.
The group of implements from the upper strata is, on the whole, of the same general type as that of the Robin-Hood Cave, although no fragments of the elaborately chipped "lance-heads" of the "type de Solutré" were discovered, nor any implements of the St.-Acheul or Moustier forms.
The remains of the associated animals, as compared with those of the Robin-Hood Cave, present no points of difference which are worthy of special notice.
C. Remains of Historic Age.
The works of art and the remains of the animals in the superficial stratum at the entrance, and above the stalagmite in the cave, are of the same general order as those which have been mentioned from the Robin-Hood Cave; but no fragments of prehistoric pottery were met with. They consist of the following:—
1. A large, plain, harp-shaped fibula of bronze, quite perfect, found at the entrance.
2. A bone awl.
3. A square polished bone, like a die cut in half, ornamented with circles on all sides but one.
4. Numerous fragments of grey lathe-turned Romano-British ware.
5. A fragment of a whetstone.
6. A black flint strike-a-light.
7. A calcaneum of an adult, and three vertebræ of a child. The first of these was found outside the entrance, associated with the bronze brooch above mentioned and a fragment of coarse pottery. Close by were burnt stones and charcoal, and fragments of broken and cut bones, which proved the position of the hearths during the time of the Romano-British occupation of the cave.
A fragment of glazed mediæval(?) ware and a silver coin, which Mr. Evans has been kind enough to identify as probably of Henry 1st, demand no further notice.
The following animals occurred in the superficial deposit above the stalagmite:—
D. Robin-Hood and Church-Hole Caves occupied by Brit-Welsh Refugees.
This group of prehistoric and historic animals is identical with that which has been met with in the caves of Dowkerbottom, Kelko, and Victoria in Yorkshire, of Kirkhead in North Lancashire, of Poole's Cave, near Buxton, and of Thor's Cave, near Ashbourne, in Staffordshire; and in all these it is associated with the same set of human implements and ornaments, which are proved by the coins to belong to the period which lies between the departure of the Roman legions from Britain and the conquest by the English. All these caves, as may be seen by a reference to my work on 'Cave-hunting,' have been used as places of shelter by Brit-Welsh refugees flying from their homes before the face of the English invaders. They complete and round off the story of the conquest revealed by the lament of Gildas, and by the blackened ruins of the Roman towns and villages, and they testify to the truth of the views as to the nature of the English conquest held by the eminent historians Messrs. Green and E. A. Freeman.
The date of the occupation of these caves by the Brit-Welsh probably falls within the fifth or sixth centuries, and is not later than the time when that district fell into the power of the Mercian or Northumbrian Angles, an event which certainly took place when the kingdom of Elmet (district of Leeds and Bradford) was conquered at the close of the sixth century. The same group of remains may reasonably be looked for in all the caves which lie within the area fought over so long in this country, by the Brit-Welsh fragments of the Roman empire on the one hand, and the ruthless, exterminating English on the other, who won it with their own good swords, and whose descendants are now founding other Englands beyond seas by similar though less violent methods.
IV. Condition of Fossil Remains in the Creswell Caves.
The bones, antlers, and teeth in these two caverns are divisible into three distinct groups, so far as relates to their condition:—(1) those which are gnawed by the Hyænas; (2) those which have been broken up and, in some cases, burnt by Man; (3) those which have been attacked by the carbonic acid in the rainwater which has percolated through the cave-earth and red sand.
By this last active agent they have sometimes been reduced to very fantastic forms. In some cases the enamel of the tooth is worn away, in others the dentine: many of the antler-tips have been so sharpened by it that they may readily be mistaken for human implements. That, for example, figured in my last paper (fig. 1) I now consider not to be of proved human workmanship. Wherever also the surface of the bone or antler has been crushed the chemical action has been intensified, and a hollow cavity is the result. In working out this point I am indebted to my colleague Prof. Schorlemmer, F.R.S., for proving it by experiment in his laboratory.
I have never observed the results of this chemical action so marked in the contents of any other cavern, which may be explained by these being nearer the surface of the ground above, and therefore more exposed to the attack of the acid-laden water than the great majority of caverns.
It may be added that the same results may be produced by chemical action intensified by pressure, as pointed out by Mr. Sorby's experiments.
V. General Conclusions as to Pleistocene Fauna of Creswell Caves.
It remains now to sum up the results of these explorations of the Creswell Caves. The associated species of the Robin-Hood Cave are the same as those of the Church Hole; and there can be no doubt that the caves were inhabited at the same time. The fauna of the Red Sand and of the Cave-earth is alike in both. The palæolithic hunter who first appeared used ruder implements than those who succeeded him.
The animals belong to groups which spread over Central Europe, from the Pyrenees as far north as the Elbe, and swung to and fro according to the season. They would naturally find their way from the low grazing-lands now occupied by the German Ocean up the line of the Trent to Creswell, as may be seen by the accompanying map (fig. 9).
In the absence of physical evidence it is useless to speculate on their relation in this district to the Glacial period, because they lived in Europe in Preglacial, Glacial ( = Interglacial), and Post-glacial times.
A. No Cave-fauna proved to be Pre- or Interglacial.
Nor, may it be added, is there satisfactory evidence offered by any cave in this country which enables us to fix the relation to the Glacial age of any cave-fauna in particular. In the Victoria Cave, for example, quoted by Mr. Tiddeman, Mr. James Geikie, and others, as decisive of the Pre- or Interglacial age of the cave-fauna below the clay, the whole question turns on the age of the clay above the bone-bearing strata at and within the entrance. And this is not proved to be "boulder-clay" ('Ice Age,' p. 510), because there are no boulders in it; nor is it proved to be Glacial ('Nature,' 1876, p. 505), because clay of that kind is now being deposited in that very cave. That it has ultimately been derived from the wreck of the Boulder-clay at a higher level, which was formerly spread over the country, and has been washed in by the rains, is very probable. Nor do the piles of travelled blocks which occur in the talus outside the entrance throw any light on the point, because they are remaniés and not in situ. They may have tumbled from the cliffs above during the accumulation of the talus, and long after the glaciers had retired from Yorkshire. These doubts as to the pre- or interglacial age of the fauna below the clay which grew up in my mind while intrusted with the conduct of the exploration, and have Fig.—Map of the Pleistocene Geography of Europe. The double line represents the probable outline of the Pleistocene land. The vertical broken lines show the range of the southern Mammalia, and the horizontal ones that of the northern forms.
been confirmed since by repeated visits, are shared by Prof. Hughes, whose opinions on a matter of this kind are entitled to the greatest weight. At present he holds that it is postglacial.
The second reputed case of the discovery of Pleistocene mammalia in Glacial or Interglacial deposits is offered by those in the caves of Cefn explored and described by Dr. Falconer, Mrs. William Wynn, Prof. Hughes, the Rev. D. R. Thomas, and myself, and lately correlated (Quart. Journ. Geol. Soc. xxxii. p. 94) by Mr. Mackintosh with the Glacial strata of the surrounding district. Here, again, the value of the evidence turns on the point as to whether the strata inside the caves are Glacial deposits in situ or have been derived from their denudation. Both Prof. Hughes and myself agree in holding the latter view. This may have happened at any period in the Pleistocene age subsequent to their deposition, by the waves of the sea. It seems therefore to me altogether premature to build up any hypothesis on the foundations offered by the discoveries made hitherto in these two sets of caves as to the relation of their contents to the Glacial period. The open caves were undoubtedly inhabited by the wild animals before the Glacial age; but I do not know of any one cave in any part of Europe which has been proved to contain Preglacial or Interglacial mammalia.
B. No proof of Pre- or Interglacial Cave-Man in Britain.
The question naturally arises, When did Man first appear the cave-fauna? Messrs. Tiddeman and James Geikie find an answer in the discovery of "a human bone or fibula," which "was certainly found beneath Glacial clay in the Victoria Cave." That this clay is Glacial is, as I have shown above, a matter of opinion; nor am I by any means satisfied that the fragment of shaft without articulations of so variable a bone is really beyond all doubt human. When first discovered it seemed to me too equivocal a specimen to be identified with absolute certainty; and therefore it was omitted from my report to the British Association in 1873. Prof. Busk (Anthropological Journ. iii. p. 392) also, to whom it was submitted, considered it equivocal, then "was induced to think that it might be elephantine," and ultimately concluded, from its correspondence with an abnormal and unique recent human fibula, that it is human. Since this identification the numerous Bear's fibulæ from Windy Knoll which I have examined seem to me to throw additional light on the fragment, and to render it very probable that it is ursine. I am not prepared to say that I can identify it with any one ursine fibula; but, taking into account the great difference in size and form in that bone, and the fact that one fossil Bear's fibula differs from another as much as or more than this one does, it may probably be referred to one or another of the fossil Bears U. spelæus or U. ferox, of which the remains found in the Victoria Cave are of gigantic size. On this point I would remark that a fragment of ursine fibula, from the cavern of Lozère, in the British Museum very nearly comes up to that of Victoria in size, measuring in circumference 2⋅0 inches as compared with 2⋅2 of the latter. The Victoria fibula differs far more from the series of normal human fibulæ than from the series of those of Bears. At all events the obscure fragment in question seems to me altogether insufficient to base any theory as to "Pre-" or "Interglacial Man," both in itself and in the conditions of its discovery. Prof. Busk, whose absence through indisposition this evening I regret, has requested me to say on his part that he "should not himself be inclined to rest or to base the existence of Preglacial Man on a fragment of bone like that, about which it is impossible that some doubt should not exist."
Nor am I aware of any other cave which offers proof of the presence of Man in this country before or during the Glacial period. Fixing my eyes upon the Pleistocene fauna only, I find that that portion of it to which Man belongs (the Arctic division) arrived in Britain before the deposit of the Boulder-clays, and lived here afterwards, and that therefore there are a priori grounds for the belief that Man also arrived at the same time. Proof of this, however, is wanting, unless the Lower Brick-earths of the Thames valley with Rhinoceros megarhinus be taken to be Preglacial, in which the discovery of a flint flake by the Rev. O. Fisher (Proceed. West Lond. Scient. Assoc. Sept. 1876) and myself in 1872 has been recently confirmed by that of a second by Mr. R. W. Cheadle.
In all probability, while the Pleistocene climate was being lowered to such a degree as to allow of the invasion of Europe by the Arctic animals Man came in; and as the climate became so severe as to allow of large tracts of ground in the north being covered with an ice-sheet, and the higher grounds of Central and Southern Europe with glaciers, Man and the animals were pushed down further to the south. When the climate, after various oscillations, grew warmer, they found their way again northwards and over the glaciated areas. On this view Man would be Preglacial, Glacial, and Postglacial in Europe, and it would be impossible to arrive at the age of any given accumulation of his remains either in the caves or river-valleys, apart from physical evidence in each case,—such evidence, for example, as that recorded by Lyell, Prestwich, Evans, Wyatt, and others regarding the fluviatile strata with Palæolithic implements at Bedford, Hoxne, and in the valley of the Thames, which are proved to be newer than the Boulder-clay of their respective districts, and to be therefore "Postglacial" in the sense of being after the minimum temperature was reached, of which that Boulder-clay is the sign. I am unable to see that we gain any thing by the term "Interglacial," which Mr. James Geikie proposes not merely for these Palæolithic gravels but for all those in France as far south as the Pyrenees, without proving that any one of them is covered by a Glacial deposit.
C. The Palæolithic Man of Creswell of late Pleistocene Age.
It seems to me that glaciers and icebergs and their work, however valuable instruments they may be for classifying the Pleistocene strata in glaciated areas, cannot be used successfully in non-glaciated areas for the arrangement of the European Pleistocenes, which must be treated in the same way as other geological deposits by an appeal to the animal remains which they contain. The glacial series of events is one thing, and the zoological altogether another thing. The Pleistocene fauna is not divided from that which went before and that which followed after by a barrier of ice.
The Palæolithic hunters of the Creswell Caves, judged by the zoological standard, belong to the late Pleistocene age, since the numerous remains of Reindeer prove that the Arctic mammalia were then in possession of the land. Whether they be Pre- Inter-, or Postglacial is altogether doubtful.
Prof. Rütimeyer dwelt on the insufficiency of stratigraphical data for the determination of the age of glacial deposits in caves, but referred to two beds of lignites on the shores of the Lake of Zürich, which are undoubtedly of interglacial age, seeing that they are underlain and overlain by glacial deposits. In these lignites there had been found remains of Cervus elaphus, C. alces, Ursus spelæus, and of Rhinoceros hemitœchus and Elephas antiquus, the last two determined by the late Dr. Falconer. He remarked that traces of man's existence have been found along with such remains, and in Italy a human skull occurred in strata containing Elephas meridionalis. In the lignite of Wetzikon thin wooden stakes have been met with, sharpened at one end, and bound round with what seemed to be strips of bark, which, however, had proved to be small segments of similar sticks split radially in the direction of the medullary rays. Prof. Rütimeyer added that traces of man have been thus discovered in true Pliocene deposits on both sides of the Alps.
Mr. Evans, from the form of the needle and scrapers, was inclined to refer them to a later age than that usually assigned to Solutré. He inquired whether the ruddle mentioned by Prof. Dawkins consisted of scraped hæmatite like that found in French caves: for if so it showed an interesting similarity of habit in people so widely separated. He noticed the resemblance of the quartzite implements to those of the neighbourhood of Toulouse. With regard to the earliest appearance of man in this country, Mr. Evans remarked that, if there was evidence of his presence in glacial or preglacial times, he must have existed previously somewhere else under a milder climate. This, he thought, was probable; but he had not yet met with any conclusive evidence of the fact, and he was glad to find that the determination of the supposed human fibula from the Victoria Cave was so doubtful that it may safely be rejected. With regard to the alleged discovery of traces of preglacial man in Suffolk and Norfolk, he thought it was founded on a complete misunderstanding of the nature of the beds, which were really remaniés.
Dr. Murie said that the whole matter resolved itself into a very small point. With regard to the supposed human fibula from Victoria Cave, he stated that, his attention having been called to the bone by Prof. Busk, he had made a careful examination and comparison of it in the Museum of the Royal College of Surgeons, and come to the conclusion that it might be the bone of almost any animal; all ideas of the habits of the cave-dwellers founded upon it were therefore mere fictions.
Prof. Ramsay thought that the evidence went to prove the existence of these caves before the Glacial period. They must have been excavated by the action of water charged with carbonic acid; and glacial bones may easily have got into them. He was much gratified by Prof. Rütimeyer's confirmation of the occurrence in Switzerland of interglacial beds containing evidence of the existence of man; and if man went up to Glacial beds, he must have previously lived some- where outside them. He thought that the evidence for the existence of man in the Victoria Cave before the Glacial period was stronger than that against it.
Mr. Callard remarked that the Victoria-Cave fibula was found just at the entrance to and not inside the cave; and as there was a doubt about its being human, it should be left out of consideration. The lamination of the clays that cover the bone might, he thought, have resulted from their being slowly dropped from above at a subsequent period.
Prof. Prestwich said that geologists could not found any argument upon this bone. He differed from Prof. Dawkins with regard to the age of the deposits in the Victoria Cave, which he thought might be Preglacial, but agreed with him that in this country we have no evidence of the presence of man before the Glacial age. The Lower Thames gravels are of Postglacial age, as the Gryphæa incurva has been found in them, and this would tend to fix their date as subsequent to the Boulder-clay, from which that fossil is most likely derived.
The President noticed the interesting association of the Woolly Rhinoceros, Mammoth, and Reindeer, and commented on the alleged difficulty of separating the Grizzly and Brown Bears by their comparative anatomy, which, dealing as it does here with the skeletons alone, and leaving out of consideration the habits of the animals and all zoological data, seems to show an identity of two animals which in nature are very distinct. He asked Prof. Boyd Dawkins whether the impression which prevailed in some quarters that there had been a want of care in the excavation of the Victoria Cave was well-founded.
Prof. W. Boyd Dawkins said that, with respect to the Victoria Cave, he could not say whether it was preglacial or glacial, nor even define its relation to the Glacial period. The age of the clays was a matter of opinion. At present the Victoria Cave is being very carefully worked. In this country, he thought, we have no evidence of Preglacial man, unless the Lower Brick-earths be Preglacial.
↑Our method of work was to put up into calico bags, properly labelled, the results of the labours of each day; and these were, from time to time, sent off in hampers to Owens College, where they were spread out, cleaned, gelatinized, and arranged, each date, corresponding with the day's work, being marked on the plan. This was continued until, in six weeks, the caves were worked out as far as we cared to pursue them.
↑See 'Excavations at the Kesslerloch Cave, near Thayingen.' By Conrad Merk. Translated by J. E. Lee. Longmans, 1876.
↑'Reconnaissance of North-western Wyoming,' by W. A. Jones, p. 261.
↑Dr. Schweinfurt remarks that, on his journey to the Niam-Niam, "the halting-places of a former caravan were covered by heaps of broken bones."—Vol. i.
↑I take this opportunity of thanking Dr. Lortet, the Director of the Geological Museum in the Palais des Beaux Arts, at Lyons, for giving me every facility for working in 1873 at the fossil mammals under his care.
↑4447, College of Surgeons. The socket of the true molar proves the latter to have been bifanged. It is monofanged in 4447 a. This tooth is therefore variable in character in the living H. crocuta.
↑Tiddeman, 'Nature,' 1876, p. 505; see also Brit. Assoc. Rep. 1875, p. 173:—"In the opinion of yonr reporter, the Craven savage, who lived before the Great Ice-sheet and before the Great Submergence, may form another of the many strong ties which bind together the sciences of Geology and Anthropology." Geikie, 'Ice-Age, '1st edit. p. 510:—"The interest of this discovery (i.e. of the fibula) consists in the fact that the deposit from which the bone was obtained is overlaid, as Mr. Tiddeman has shown, 'by a bed of stiff Glacial clay containing ice-scratched boulders.' Here then is direct proof that Man lived in England prior to the last Interglacial period."
↑The Palæolithic gravels of Hoxne, Bedford, and Teddington are considered by Mr. Evans later than the Upper Boulder-clay of Searles Wood (Presidential Address, Quart. Journ. Geol. Soc. 1875. p. lxxiv).