Re: Neanderthal age and sex

Dan Barnes (
Tue, 22 Oct 1996 17:25:10 GMT

In article <>, says...
>I am working on a project regarding Neanderthal age and sex. I have
>recently come across Trinkaus' article "Neanderthal Mortality Patterns"
>(J Arch Sci 22, 121-142) in which he discusses the demographic patterns
>of Neanderthals based on age. However, he does not discuss the sex of
>the individuals. Does anyone know if anyone has assessed Neanderthals
>for sex. Is it possible to come up with accurate sex estimates? If the
>aging techniques used in paleodemography are being used for Neanderthals
>then why can't the sexing techniques be used as well. Is it due to the
>lack of material available for study?
>If anyone has any info it would be greatly appreciated.

It is difficult to 'sex' fossils when the pelvis is absent (and it is in the majority of
cases). The sex can be gauged by where the fossils stats fall within its
population e.g. if the teeth are small and the bones not so robust. Sexual
dimorphism aids this assessment. Its not 100% accurate but it gives an idea.
You could check out papers on sexual dimorphism for a further (more detailled)