Friday, July 24, 2009
Scientists have drawn a rough conclusion that a Neanderthal skeleton from some 50,000 - 75,000 years ago has been killed by a human spear. That conclusion is based on the premise that humans at the time had projectile weapons that Neanderthals didn't, although the article mentions near the bottom that Neanderthals developed projectile weapons as well. The Neanderthal that was stabbed with the spear didn't die right away but rather a few weeks later.
It's possible that this could be an example of interspecies violence, and it does feel a bit weird to think of our ancestors wiping out a whole other species that looked so similar to us, but for all we know this case could have been something else - perhaps the spear was thrown due to a mistake in thinking the Neanderthal to be something else, or it could have been a simple bad throw. For all we know the Neanderthal and the human could have been best friends.
After all, these two seem to be best friends too and they don't resemble each other at all.