Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Sima De Los Huesos

Archaeological cave site found in 1976 in the Sierra de Atapuerca, Ibeas, Spain, and dated to 325-205 kya (U series, Matuyama chron). At least 33 Middle Pleistocene individuals have been found (4,000 specimens). Variation in cranial capacities (1125-1390 cm3) has been interpreted as representing extensive sexual dimorphism. The population is characterized by a mosaic of erectine and neandertaloid features (e.g. Atapuerca 5). A controversial new taxon, Homo antecessor, has been proposed for this material that other researchers recognize as H. heidelbergensis. In 1998, one unworn quartz hand-ax was found among the earliest fossils, and has been interpreted by some as evidence for burial ritual and symbolism. Aka Atapuerca, pit of bones, SH site.

See Gran Dolina.

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