Objectives: We reassess the taxonomic assignment and stratigraphic context of a permanent upper first molar and a permanent lower third premolar recovered from the archeological site of Lezetxiki in the North of the Iberian Peninsula. Materials and Methods: We assessed the external and internal morphology of the teeth using qualitative descriptions, crown diameters, dental tissue proportions, and geometric morphometrics. The teeth from Lezetxiki were compared with Middle Pleistocene specimens, Neanderthals, Upper Paleolithic modern humans, and recent modern humans. Results: Both teeth were consistent with a Neanderthal classification. The upper first molar shows taurodontism, and its cusp proportions and overall morphology match those of Neanderthals. Geometric morphometric analyses of occlusal anatomy classify this molar as a Neanderthal with a posterior probability of 76%. The lower third premolar, which was originally classified as a lower fourth premolar, also shows a Neanderthal morphology. This premolar is classified as a Neanderthal with a posterior probability of 60%. Discussion: These teeth represent the only adult Neanderthal teeth from the Western Pyrenees region found to date. The teeth were found at a stratigraphic level (designated Level III) that marks the transition level from Mousterian to Aurignacian, and are among the most recent Neanderthal remains from the north of the Iberian Peninsula.
|Pages (from-to)||745 - 760|
|Number of pages||16|
|Journal||American Journal of Biological Anthropology|
|Early online date||31 Jan 2023|
|Publication status||Published - 31 Jan 2023|
- Dental tissue proportions
- Geometric morphometrics