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New Study Shows Compassion Helped Neanderthals to Survive

New Study Shows Compassion Helped Neanderthals to Survive

They have an unwarranted image as brutish and uncaring, but new research has revealed just how knowledgeable and effective Neanderthal healthcare was.

The study, by the University of York, reveals that Neanderthal healthcare was uncalculated and highly effective -- challenging our notions that they were brutish compared to modern humans.

The researchers argue that the care provided was widespread and should be seen as a "compassionate and knowledgeable response to injury and illness."

It is well known that Neanderthals sometimes provided care for the injured, but new analysis by the team at York suggest they were genuinely caring of their peers, regardless of the level of illness or injury, rather than helping others out of self-interest.

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Sick Neanderthal’s were cared for by the group. ( CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 )

Lead author, Dr Penny Spikins, senior lecturer in the Archaeology of Human Origin at the University of York, said: "Our findings suggest Neanderthals didn't think in terms of whether others might repay their efforts, they just responded to their feelings about seeing their loved ones suffering."

Most of the individuals archaeologists know about had a severe injury of some kind, with detailed pathologies highlighting a range of debilitating conditions and injuries.

In some cases the injuries occurred long before death and would have required monitoring, massage, fever management and hygiene care, the study suggests.

Analysis of a male aged around 25-40 at time of death revealed a catalogue of poor heath, including a degenerative disease of the spine and shoulders.

His condition would have sapped his strength over the final 12 months of life and severely restricted his ability to contribute to the group.

Yet, the authors of the study argue he remained part of the group as his articulated remains were subsequently carefully buried.

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The skull of the Neandertal known as Shanidar 1 show signs of a blow to the head received at an early age. (Image: Courtesy of Erik Trinkaus)

Dr Spikins added: "We argue that the social significance of the broader pattern of healthcare has been overlooked and interpretations of a limited or calculated response to healthcare have been influenced by preconceptions of Neanderthals as being 'different' and even brutish. However, a detailed consideration of the evidence in its social and cultural context reveals a different picture.

"The very similarity of Neanderthal healthcare to that of later periods has important implications. We argue that organized, knowledgeable and caring healthcare is not unique to our species but rather has a long evolutionary history."

The study was partially supported by the John Templeton Foundation and published in the journal World Archaeology .


Neanderthals May Have Gone Extinct Due to Their Brain Shape

For 200,000 years, Neanderthals thrived throughout Eurasia. They seem to have lived full and happy lives. Like us, theyproduced art, mourned their dead, and even used toothpicks to clean between their teeth. But 45,000 years ago, as Homo sapiens made a home in Europe for the first time, Neanderthals suddenly disappeared.

Now, new Japanese research, published in the journal Scientific Reports, gives some suggestions as to why𠅋y looking at Neanderthals’ brains.

This is the first time they’ve been able to do so. Before this pioneering study, Neanderthal brains were inaccessible to researchers, with the soft tissue having long since perished. But a complicated technique called computational neuroanatomy allowed these scientists to produce detailed 3D models of Neanderthal brains using data from four Neanderthal skulls. Next, they compared them to brain models for early anatomically modern humans and an 𠇊verage” modern human brain, using data from almost 1,200 MRI scans.

Comparisons of the brain surface morphology among Neanderthal (NT), early Homo sapiens (EH) and modern Homo sapiens (MH). The upper row shows the differences in brain surface area. The lower level shows the morphological difference in the direction perpendicular to the tangential surface. (Credit: Spring Nature/Scientific Reports)

The findings reveal striking differences in human and Neanderthal brain morphology. Sure, Neanderthals had bigger skulls, and correspondingly larger brains, but Homo sapiens’ cerebellum is proportionately far larger. This ridged organ, shaped almost like a butterfly, sits beneath the squiggly globes of the larger cerebrum. But its size belies its capability: It’s responsible for everything from movement, balance and vision to learning, language and mood.

What this suggests, researchers say, is that Neanderthals seem to have been less cognitively flexible, and worse at thinking on their feet, learning and adapting to change than Homo sapiens. They may have had language—it’s still up for debate𠅋ut their linguistic processing abilities would have been a fraction of modern humans’. Add to that shorter attention spans, and worse short- and long-term memories, and a picture begins to emerge about how these early people might have struggled to adapt in comparison.

VIDEO: Neanderthals

What caused the Neanderthals to go extinct?

While it’s impossible to say why Neanderthals suddenly disappeared, this study presents a few clues. We know for sure that modern humans and Neanderthals coexisted: Homo sapiens’ superior cognitive and communication skills may have given them greater ability to forage and hunt, form political alliances, or come up with technology to make life easier. Neanderthals may not have been able to compete.

But not everyone is convinced by the study, with some scientists querying whether the researchers’ conclusions about brain size and shape are necessarily the right ones. And on top of that, there are larger questions to be asked about whether our modern conception of “intelligence” really applies𠅊nd whether Neanderthals may have had other special abilities now lost to time.


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Compassion Helped Neanderthals Survive

The study, by the University of York, reveals that Neanderthal healthcare was uncalculated and highly effective&mdashchallenging our notions that they were brutish compared to modern humans.

The researchers argue that the care provided was widespread and should be seen as a "compassionate and knowledgeable response to injury and illness."

It is well known that Neanderthals sometimes provided care for the injured, but new analysis by the team at York suggest they were genuinely caring of their peers, regardless of the level of illness or injury, rather than helping others out of self-interest.

Lead author, Dr Penny Spikins, senior lecturer in the Archaeology of Human Origin at the University of York, said: "Our findings suggest Neanderthals didn't think in terms of whether others might repay their efforts, they just responded to their feelings about seeing their loved ones suffering."

Most of the individuals archaeologists know about had a severe injury of some kind, with detailed pathologies highlighting a range of debilitating conditions and injuries.

In some cases the injuries occurred long before death and would have required monitoring, massage, fever management, and hygiene care, the study suggests.

Analysis of a male aged around 25-40 at time of death revealed a catalogue of poor heath, including a degenerative disease of the spine and shoulders.

His condition would have sapped his strength over the final 12 months of life and severely restricted his ability to contribute to the group.

Yet, the authors of the study argue he remained part of the group as his articulated remains were subsequently carefully buried.

Dr Spikins added: "We argue that the social significance of the broader pattern of healthcare has been overlooked and interpretations of a limited or calculated response to healthcare have been influenced by preconceptions of Neanderthals as being 'different' and even brutish. However, a detailed consideration of the evidence in its social and cultural context reveals a different picture.

"The very similarity of Neanderthal healthcare to that of later periods has important implications. We argue that organised, knowledgeable and caring healthcare is not unique to our species but rather has a long evolutionary history."

The study was partially supported by the John Templeton Foundation and published in the journal World Archaeology.


Compassion helped Neanderthals to survive, says study

Neanderthals could survive for almost 300,000 years because they were compassionate and genuinely cared about their peers, finds a research that challenges popular notions that they were brutish compared to modern humans.

The study showed that the kind of care exhibited by Neanderthals was uncalculated and highly effective.

It should be seen as a "compassionate and knowledgeable response to injury and illness".

While it is well known that Neanderthals sometimes provided care for the injured, the study suggests that they were genuinely caring of their peers, regardless of the level of illness or injury, rather than helping others out of self-interest.

"Our findings suggest Neanderthals didn't think in terms of whether others might repay their efforts, they just responded to their feelings about seeing their loved ones suffering," said lead author Penny Spikins, senior lecturer at the University of York in England.

The remains analysed in the study, published in the journal World Archaeology, showed that most had injuries that needed monitoring, massage, fever management and good hygiene provided out of genuine feelings for others rather than self-interest.

Analysis of a male aged around 25-40 years at the time of death revealed a catalogue of poor health, including a degenerative disease of the spine and shoulders.

His condition would have sapped his strength over the final 12 months of life and severely restricted his ability to contribute to the group.

Yet, he remained part of the group as his articulated remains were subsequently carefully buried, the researchers said.

"We argue that the social significance of the broader pattern of healthcare has been overlooked and interpretations of a limited or calculated response to healthcare have been influenced by preconceptions of Neanderthals as being 'different' and even brutish," Spikins said.

"The very similarity of Neanderthal healthcare to that of later periods has important implications. We argue that organised, knowledgeable and caring healthcare is not unique to our species but rather has a long evolutionary history," Spikins added.


Compassion was the Key to Neanderthals Survival

Compassion helped Neanderthals survive for almost 300,000 years because they genuinely cared for their peers, shows new study. The new finding is contrary to popular notions that the Neanderthals were brutish compared to modern humans.

The study showed that the kind of care exhibited by Neanderthals was uncalculated and highly effective.

It should be seen as a "compassionate and knowledgeable response to injury and illness".

While, it is well known that Neanderthals sometimes provided care for the injured, the study suggests that they were genuinely caring of their peers, regardless of the level of illness or injury, rather than helping others out of self-interest.

"Our findings suggest Neanderthals didn't think in terms of whether others might repay their efforts, they just responded to their feelings about seeing their loved ones suffering," said lead author Penny Spikins, senior lecturer at the University of York in England.

The remains analysed in the study, published in the journal World Archaeology, showed that most had injuries that needed monitoring, massage, fever management and good hygiene provided out of genuine feelings for others rather than self-interest.

Analysis of a male aged around 25-40 years at time of death revealed a catalogue of poor heath, including a degenerative disease of the spine and shoulders.

His condition would have sapped his strength over the final 12 months of life and severely restricted his ability to contribute to the group.

Yet, he remained part of the group as his articulated remains were subsequently carefully buried, the researchers said.

"We argue that the social significance of the broader pattern of healthcare has been overlooked and interpretations of a limited or calculated response to healthcare have been influenced by preconceptions of Neanderthals as being 'different' and even brutish," Spikins said.

"The very similarity of Neanderthal healthcare to that of later periods has important implications. We argue that organised, knowledgeable and caring healthcare is not unique to our species but rather has a long evolutionary history," Spikins added.


Evolution

His condition would have sapped his strength over the final 12 months of life and severely restricted his ability to contribute to the group.

Yet, the authors of the study argue he remained part of the group as his articulated remains were subsequently carefully buried.

Dr Spikins added: &ldquoWe argue that the social significance of the broader pattern of healthcare has been overlooked and interpretations of a limited or calculated response to healthcare have been influenced by preconceptions of Neanderthals as being &lsquodifferent&rsquo and even brutish. However, a detailed consideration of the evidence in its social and cultural context reveals a different picture.

&ldquoThe very similarity of Neanderthal healthcare to that of later periods has important implications. We argue that organised, knowledgeable and caring healthcare is not unique to our species but rather has a long evolutionary history.&rdquo

The study was partially supported by the John Templeton Foundation and published in the journal World Archaeology.


Archaeology News Report

They have an unwarranted image as brutish and uncaring, but new research has revealed just how knowledgeable and effective Neanderthal healthcare was.

The study, by the University of York, reveals that Neanderthal healthcare was uncalculated and highly effective - challenging our notions that they were brutish compared to modern humans.

The researchers argue that the care provided was widespread and should be seen as a "compassionate and knowledgeable response to injury and illness."

It is well known that Neanderthals sometimes provided care for the injured, but new analysis by the team at York suggest they were genuinely caring of their peers, regardless of the level of illness or injury, rather than helping others out of self-interest.

Lead author, Dr Penny Spikins, senior lecturer in the Archaeology of Human Origin at the University of York, said: "Our findings suggest Neanderthals didn't think in terms of whether others might repay their efforts, they just responded to their feelings about seeing their loved ones suffering."

Most of the individuals archaeologists know about had a severe injury of some kind, with detailed pathologies highlighting a range of debilitating conditions and injuries.

In some cases the injuries occurred long before death and would have required monitoring, massage, fever management and hygiene care, the study suggests.

Analysis of a male aged around 25-40 at time of death revealed a catalogue of poor heath, including a degenerative disease of the spine and shoulders.

His condition would have sapped his strength over the final 12 months of life and severely restricted his ability to contribute to the group.

Yet, the authors of the study argue he remained part of the group as his articulated remains were subsequently carefully buried.

Dr Spikins added: "We argue that the social significance of the broader pattern of healthcare has been overlooked and interpretations of a limited or calculated response to healthcare have been influenced by preconceptions of Neanderthals as being 'different' and even brutish. However, a detailed consideration of the evidence in its social and cultural context reveals a different picture.

"The very similarity of Neanderthal healthcare to that of later periods has important implications. We argue that organised, knowledgeable and caring healthcare is not unique to our species but rather has a long evolutionary history."

The study was partially supported by the John Templeton Foundation and published in the journal World Archaeology.


Compassion may have helped Neanderthals to survive

London: Neanderthal may have an unwarranted image as brutish and uncaring, say scientists who claim that the archaic humans were compassionate beings who could provide knowledgeable response to injury and illness.

The study by the University of York in the UK, shows that Neanderthal health care was uncalculated and highly effective - challenging our notions that they were brutish compared to modern humans.

The care provided was widespread and should be seen as a "compassionate and knowledgeable response to injury and illness," researchers said. It is well known that Neanderthals sometimes provided care for the injured.

However, the study published in the journal World Archaeology suggests that they were genuinely caring of their peers, regardless of the level of illness or injury, rather than helping others out of self-interest.

"Our findings suggest Neanderthals didnt think in terms of whether others might repay their efforts, they just responded to their feelings about seeing their loved ones suffering," said Penny Spikins, senior lecturer at the University of York.

Most of the individuals archaeologists know about had a severe injury of some kind, with detailed pathologies highlighting a range of debilitating conditions and injuries.

In some cases the injuries occurred long before death and would have required monitoring, massage, fever management and hygiene care, researchers said. Analysis of a male aged around 25-40 at time of death revealed a catalogue of poor heath, including a degenerative disease of the spine and shoulders.

His condition would have sapped his strength over the final 12 months of life and severely restricted his ability to contribute to the group. Yet, researchers argue he remained part of the group as his articulated remains were subsequently carefully buried.

"We argue that the social significance of the broader pattern of health care has been overlooked and interpretations of a limited or calculated response to health care have been influenced by preconceptions of Neanderthals as being different and even brutish," researchers said. "However, a detailed consideration of the evidence in its social and cultural context reveals a different picture," they said.

"The very similarity of Neanderthal health care to that of later periods has important implications. We argue that organised, knowledgeable and caring health care is not unique to our species but rather has a long evolutionary history," they added.


Neanderthals Were Likely Compassionate And Provided Each Other With Healthcare

By now there is enough evidence to show that – far from the brutish and uncouth stereotype that emerged during the 20th century – Neanderthals were intelligent, cultured, and not so different from our own ancestors.

Now a new study is arguing that our northern cousins were also compassionate and caring, which would have helped them survive the harsh conditions of Ice Age Europe. Publishing their findings in the journal World Archaeology, the researchers suggest that the extensive use of healthcare within Neanderthal society shows that the hominins were genuinely caring for their peers, rather than simply satisfying their own selfish interests.

They have arrived at this conclusion based on the remains of Neanderthals showing evidence of healed trauma. This suggests that rather than taking the emotionless view that these members of the group were not contributing and therefore a burden, the other members instead used their time and energy to care for them.

One example comes from a Neanderthal man aged between 25 and 40 years old. His skeleton shows that he suffered from some form of degenerative disease in his spine and shoulders at the time of his death. The extent of the disease means that, during the last year of his life at least, he wouldn't have been able to contribute much to his group, and yet he survived. When this man eventually did die, his remains were carefully buried by his community.

“We argue that the social significance of the broader pattern of healthcare has been overlooked and interpretations of a limited or calculated response to healthcare have been influenced by preconceptions of Neanderthals as being ‘different’ and even brutish,” said the University of York’s Dr Penny Spikins, lead author of the study. “However, a detailed consideration of the evidence in its social and cultural context reveals a different picture.”

We know that Neanderthals didn't just provide each other with bedside care, but also medicine. DNA analysis of the hardened plaques found on Neanderthal teeth shows that they were using aspirin for pain relief, and possibly even penicillin.

This feeds into a wider picture of how we tend to view not only Neanderthals, but also our own ancestors, and how we generally think of them as separate from us. Despite the hand-to-mouth existence of hunter-gathers some 34,000 years ago, one group still managed to care for disabled children within their community, one of whom likely couldn’t walk.

The compassion that Neanderthals showed towards one another, the authors argue, would have helped them survive in the harsh conditions of Europe at the time they were stalking the plains. Looking after members of their group even when there was no immediate benefit – doing so simply out of pure empathy – would have been a significant advantage in the long run.


Compassion Helped Neanderthals To Survive

They have an unwarranted image as brutish and uncaring, but new research has revealed just how knowledgeable and effective Neanderthal healthcare was.

The study, by the University of York, reveals that Neanderthal healthcare was uncalculated and highly effective – challenging our notions that they were brutish compared to modern humans.

The researchers argue that the care provided was widespread and should be seen as a “compassionate and knowledgeable response to injury and illness.”

It is well known that Neanderthals sometimes provided care for the injured, but new analysis by the team at York suggest they were genuinely caring of their peers, regardless of the level of illness or injury, rather than helping others out of self-interest.

Lead author, Dr Penny Spikins, senior lecturer in the Archaeology of Human Origin at the University of York, said: “Our findings suggest Neanderthals didn’t think in terms of whether others might repay their efforts, they just responded to their feelings about seeing their loved ones suffering.”

Most of the individuals archaeologists know about had a severe injury of some kind, with detailed pathologies highlighting a range of debilitating conditions and injuries.

In some cases the injuries occurred long before death and would have required monitoring, massage, fever management and hygiene care, the study suggests.

Analysis of a male aged around 25-40 at time of death revealed a catalogue of poor heath, including a degenerative disease of the spine and shoulders.

His condition would have sapped his strength over the final 12 months of life and severely restricted his ability to contribute to the group.

Yet, the authors of the study argue he remained part of the group as his articulated remains were subsequently carefully buried.

Dr Spikins added: “We argue that the social significance of the broader pattern of healthcare has been overlooked and interpretations of a limited or calculated response to healthcare have been influenced by preconceptions of Neanderthals as being ‘different’ and even brutish. However, a detailed consideration of the evidence in its social and cultural context reveals a different picture.

“The very similarity of Neanderthal healthcare to that of later periods has important implications. We argue that organised, knowledgeable and caring healthcare is not unique to our species but rather has a long evolutionary history.”

The study was partially supported by the John Templeton Foundation and published in the journal World Archaeology.

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Watch the video: Πότε και πού εμφανίστηκε τελικά ο Homo sapiens; (January 2022).