G.A. LYRAS, M.D. DERMITZAKIS, A.A.E. Van der
GEER, S.B. Van der GEER,
J. De VOS. 2008. The origin of Homo
floresiensis and its relation to
evolutionary processes under isolation. ANTHROPOLOGICAL SCIENCE.
Abstract: Since its first description in 2004, Homo floresiensis
has been attributed to a species of its own, a descendant of H. erectus or another early hominid, a
pathological form of H. sapiens, or a
dwarfed H. sapiens related to the
Neolithic inhabitants of Flores.
In this contribution, we apply a geometric morphometric
analysis to the skull of H. floresiensis (LB1) and
compare it with skulls of normal H.
sapiens, insular H. sapiens (Minatogawa Man and Neolithic skulls from Flores),
pathological H. sapiens (microcephalics), Asian H. erectus (Sangiran
17), H. habilis
(KNM ER 1813), and Australopithecus africanus (Sts 5). Our
analysis includes specimens that were highlighted by other authors to prove
their conclusions. The geometric morphometric analysis
separates H. floresiensis
from all H. sapiens, including the pathological and insular forms. It is
not possible to separate H. floresiensis from H. erectus. Australopithecus falls separately from all other skulls. The
Neolithic skulls from Flores
fall within the range of modern humans and are not related to LB1. The microcephalic skulls
fall within the range of modern humans, as well as the skulls of the Neolithic
small people of Flores.
The cranial shape of H. floresiensis is close to that of H. erectus and not to
that of any H. sapiens. Apart from cranial
shape, some features of H. floresiensis are not unique but are shared with other
insular taxa, such as the relatively large teeth
(shared with Early Neolithic humans of Sardinia),
and changed limb proportions (shared with Minatogawa
© 2008 The Anthropological Society of Nippon