The number of vertebrae in the Southern African Negro, the American Negro and the Bushman (San)



The numbers of precoccygeal vertebrae (PCV) are compared in Southern African Negroes, Bushman (San) and American Negroes. The S.A. Negro and San males have an exceptionally high frequency of an increased total PCV number whilst the frequencies are significantly lower in a combined Caucasoid sample and the Mongoloid samples. The American Negro male, too, has a high frequency but not as high as in S.A. Negroes. The high frequency of increased PCV number in San, S.A. Negroes and American Negroes is in keeping with the view that the Khoisan peoples (here represented by the San), the Southern African Negroes and the African ancestors of American Blacks sprang from a common proto-negriform stock.

Males have a significantly greater frequency of increased PCV to 30 or 31, whereas females are more likely to have a decreased number of 28 PCV. This sex difference is present in all the populations studied.