Neanderthal-H. sapiens encounters in Europe

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May 20, 2020

Until now the earliest encounters in Europe between members of our species, Homo sapiens, migrating out of Africa and Neanderthals was thought to have occurred around 45,000 years ago. See Earliest Neanderthal Encounters published on this website in 2015. In a paper published 10 days ago in the journal Nature, a team of researchers led by J.-J. Hublin reports on a rich find of human bone and artifacts from a cave in Bulgaria indicating an earlier arrival in Europe as much as 1000 years .

Excavations began in Bacho Kiro cave in 1938 and were resumed in the early 70s. A more thorough set of excavations began in 2015 and are reported in this paper.

Read the full analysis of these fines in the journal Nature.