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High notes of the singing Neanderthals

Neanderthals have been misunderstood. The early humanoids traditionally characterised as ape-like brutes were deeply emotional beings with high-pitched voices. They may even have sung to each other, writes Jonathan Leake. The new image has emerged from two studies of the vocal apparatus and anatomy of the creatures that occupied Europe between 200,000 and 35,000 years ago.

Neanderthal voices were loud, womanly and probably highly melodic “” not the roars and grunts previously assumed by most researchers. Stephen Mithen, professor of archeology at Reading University and author of one of the studies, said: “What is emerging is a picture of an intelligent and emotionally complex creature whose most likely form of communication would have been part language and part song.”?

Read the original article at: The Sunday Times

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