Saturday, October 1, 2022
Contact    |    RSS icon Twitter icon Facebook icon  
You are viewing: Home > News > Palaeontology > News story
Welcome Guest ( Login or Register )  
Palaeontology

Neanderthals used their thumbs differently

By T.K. Randall
November 29, 2020 · Comment icon 2 comments



Neanderthals had quite the grip. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 4.0 Neanderthal-Museum, Mettmann
A new study has revealed that Neanderthals had thumbs that were much better suited for power gripping.
For all their differences, the Neanderthals - which lived alongside and bred with modern humans before disappearing around 40,000 years ago - were remarkably similar to ourselves.

There were, however, some physical differences, one of which being their thumbs.

New research involving a detailed analysis of Neanderthal hand bone fossils has shown that they had thumbs much better suited to power gripping than to precision gripping, meaning that while they may have struggled to pick up a coin with their forefinger and thumb, they would have had no problem maintaining a tight grip on a tool such as a hammer.
"If you were to shake a Neanderthal hand you would notice this difference," Ameline Bardo - a postdoctoral research associate from the University of Kent - told Gizmodo.

"There would be confusion over where to place the thumb, and for a thumb fight I think you would win in terms of speed and movement."

Of course the Neanderthals didn't actually have hammers with handles as we have today, however they did use various forms of primitive stone tools, just like our modern human ancestors.

"Hand anatomy and the archaeological record makes abundantly clear that Neanderthals were very intelligent, sophisticated tool users and used many of the same tools that contemporary modern humans did," said Bardo.

Source: Gizmodo | Comments (2)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by acute 2 years ago
Neanderthals only learned to use a hammer after the Utah thing appeared. 
Comment icon #2 Posted by Tom1200 2 years ago
So Neanderthals were genetically predisposed to hitchhiking?  It's a dangerous hobby - no wonder they went extinct.  Like the iguanodon.


Please Login or Register to post a comment.


Our new book is out now!

The Unexplained Mysteries
Book of Weird News

 AVAILABLE NOW 

Take a walk on the weird side with this compilation of some of the weirdest stories ever to grace the pages of a newspaper.

Click here to learn more

We need your help!

Support us on Patreon

 BONUS CONTENT 

For less than the cost of a cup of coffee, you can gain access to a wide range of exclusive perks including our popular 'Lost Ghost Stories' series.

Click here to learn more

 Total Posts: 7,335,054    Topics: 301,878    Members: 198,386

 Not a member yet ? Click here to join - registration is free and only takes a moment!
Recent news and articles