Topic ID #8503 - posted 9/2/2010 3:34 AM

Human Meat Just Another Meal for Early Europeans?

Jennifer Palmer


Human Meat Just Another Meal for Early Europeans?
Cannibalism helped meet protein needs, keep rivals in line, study suggests.

James Owen
for National Geographic News
Published August 31, 2010

For some European cavemen, human meat wasn't a ritual delicacy or a food of last resort but an everyday meal, according to a new study of fossil bones found in Spain.

And, it seems, everyone in the area was doing it, making the discovery "the oldest example of cultural cannibalism known to date," the study says.

The 800,000-year-old butchered bones from the cave, called Gran Dolina, indicate cannibalism was rife among members of western Europe's first known human species, Homo antecessor.

The fossil bones, collected since 1994, reveal that "gastronomic cannibalism" was commonplace and habitual—both to meet nutritional needs and to kill off local competition, according to the study, published in the August issue of Current Anthropology.

Read the rest of the article here.

Post ID#18097 - replied 9/2/2010 8:51 AM


Now let me get this straight....

11 bodies in a 100,000 years means cannibalism was a cultural norm.

I would suggest something was wrong with their stratigraphy.


Post ID#18103 - replied 9/2/2010 12:57 PM


Gotta agree with you, Marehart, this seems little over zealous, or there is a significant typo, or some other pertinent information is lacking.  I do think the exclusivity of child/adolescent remains is an interesting element, but would need more information to form an opinion. 


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