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Keywords:

  • craniometrics;
  • human variation;
  • multivariate statistics;
  • Balkans

Abstract

Biological variation is investigated among contemporary Croatians, Bosnians, American whites, and other multitemporal Balkan populations (World War II Croatians, Macedonians, and Greeks) via multivariate statistics and distance measures of the craniofacial complex. This study demonstrates that there is considerable variation among groups of European ancestry. Bosnians and Croatians who are thought to be relatively homogenous and historically to originate from the same Slav ancestry show local variations. While environmental plasticity has been used to explain cranial changes among human groups, it does not adequately explain the variation observed between Bosnians and Croatians. It is an oversimplification to exclusively attribute the vast range of variability observed among local as well as geographic populations to environmental adaptations. Am J Phys Anthropol, 2003. © 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.