Re: Megantropus?

Alex Duncan (
13 Jul 1995 22:42:16 GMT

In article <3u1pao$> Ludvig Mortberg, writes:

>Does anybody know the phylogenetic status of megantropus? Is it
>an overgrown variant of H. erectus? An australopithecine?
>Something completely different? By the way, is there any
>evidence of Apiths ever inhabiting Asia or anyplace outside
>Africa? Claims of this have been made, right?

The Meganthropus fossils have been cited as evidence for Australopithecus
in the Far East. I don't remember the source of this right off hand.
There is a curious constellation of characteristics in some of the
earliest far eastern material. The Meganthropus mandible is remarkably
robust, but to my eye the teeth that are in it aren't that large. One of
the maxillas retains a canine diastema, but otherwise looks "Homo".
None of this stuff will probably ever fit in Australopithecus
because the crania that are associated all have much larger cranial
capacities. I believe the smallest of the Far Eastern crania has a
cranial capacity of 750 or 780 cc -- at least 200 cc above the largest
australopithecine cranial capacity.
Any help Dr. Holloway?

Alex Duncan
Dept. of Anthropology
University of Texas at Austin
Austin, TX 78712-1086