Archive for May 19th, 2006

New Research (Genesis Chapter 1?) Suggests ‘Hobbit’ Was Not a New Species

Science, Sophistication of Ancestors, Uncategorized | Posted by Chris Parker
May 19 2006

テつテつテつテつテつテつ news service
テつテつテつテつテつテつ Adrian Barnett
The debate over whether the “hobbitテ「竄ャツ fossil found on an Indonesian island is a separate species has reignited, as a new study of dwarfing in a range of mammals suggests that Homo floresiensis was a modern human with a pathological condition.

The remains of a tiny woman were found in a limestone cave in Flores, Indonesia.

Named H. floresiensis by the discoverers, she quickly became known as テ「竄ャナ鍍he hobbitテ「竄ャツ by everyone else. When the find was reported in 2004 some anthropologists disputed whether it was a new species of human, arguing that the skeleton had characteristics of a modern human with microcephaly, a condition that causes reduced cranium size.

Microcephaly is relatively common in isolated populations and is associated with reduced brain function.
Peter Brown and Mike Morwood from the University of New England, Australia, proposed that the 1-metre-tall body (known as LB1) had evolved in an isolated population of Homo erectus as an adaptation to the restricted diet found on an island. But at 380 cubic centimetres, some thought that LB1テ「竄ャ邃「s chimp-sized cranial capacity was too small to be a dwarf H. erectus.


Brown and Morwood denied this, but their conclusion has now been challenged again.

Species identity

テ「竄ャナ鄭s they dwarf, speciesテ「竄ャ邃「 brain sizes decline far more slowly than body size,テ「竄ャツ says Ann MacLarnon from Roehampton University, UK, who modelled dwarfing in a range of mammals from dogs to elephants with a team from the Field Museum, Chicago, US.

テ「竄ャナ釘rain size is key to a mammal speciesテ「竄ャ邃「 identity,テ「竄ャツ she says. There is, for example, hardly any difference in brain size between the smallest modern humans, the 1.4-metre Bambuti people of Congoテ「竄ャ邃「s Ituri Forest, and the tallest, the 2-metre Masai of east Africa.
The team calculated that a dwarfed H. erectus with a 400cc brain would weigh just 2 kilograms. テ「竄ャナ典hatテ「竄ャ邃「s one-tenth of what the Flores people must have weighed,テ「竄ャツ she explains. The only way to explain the discrepancy, the team believes, is microcephaly.
テ「竄ャナ的tテ「竄ャ邃「s perfectly plausible that these were pygmy people. But thereテ「竄ャ邃「s only one skull, and that is human and microcephalic,テ「竄ャツ says team leader Robert Martin.

This, Martin believes, ties in with the abundance of sophisticated stone tools at the cave.

テつテ「竄ャナ典hese were sophisticated people with a high level of mental development,テ「竄ャツ he says.
テ「竄ャナ鄭lthough we only have one cranium,テ「竄ャツ says Morwood, テ「竄ャナ鍍he other bones we found show that LB1 was a normal member of an endemically dwarfed hominid population.テ「竄ャツ

The distinctive traits of reduced body mass, reduced brain size and short thick legs mirror those found in other island endemic populations of large mammals, Morwood says.

He calls the microcephaly explanation テ「竄ャナ澱izarreテ「竄ャツ. It ignores other evidence from Liang Bua and the literature on island endemic evolution, he says.
Journal reference: Science (DOI: 10.1126/science.1121144)

The Dragon of Ishtar Gate;The Dragon of Murduk; Real or Imagined?

Crypto, Dinosaurs in Literature, Science, Uncategorized, Unexplained Artifact | Posted by Chris Parker
May 19 2006


“The Dragon of the Ishtar Gate may be one of Cryptozoology’s strangest, yet best-documented, ancient crypids. This two and a half millennium old depiction is so unusual that many treat it as a chimera, an impossible combination of animals that could never have existed in nature.

But the people of ancient Babylon knew and accepted the ‘dragon’ as real, as real as the bulls and lions that also share the walls”….. Dragon of the Ishtar Gate by David G Stone.テつ

テつHere at, we can’t be sure whether the Dragon of Marduk was a real creature or if it came from the imagination of the artist–but we’ve got a few ideas. It’s probably no surprise that we come down on the side of those who say it was a real creature, but we’ve got a good reason. We think we’ve seen it before.

We don’t think that artists from different cultures spanning nearly 2000 years all imagined the same strange, non-existent creature.

Although King Nebuchadnezzar in Bel and the Dragon of the Apocrypha mention a dragon, we don’t believe that this particular dragon is thatテつspecific great dragon either. But, we’ve got a notion.

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