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Keywords:

  • Krapina;
  • Teeth;
  • Dental aging;
  • Occlusal eruption;
  • Neandertals;
  • Evolution;
  • Survivorship

Abstract

An analysis of age, specimen associations, demographic characteristics, and metric features is presented for the Krapina dental sample. A critical analysis of emergence criteria applicable to skeletal samples leads to an occlusal eruption schedule which can be used to determine wear rates. These are used to provide dental ages for the Krapina jaws and isolated teeth. A number of individual associations of isolated teeth with existing jaws and with each other result in an estimated individual count between 75 and 82. Demographic analysis indicates that the specimens do not accurately sample a living population; numerous adults as well as children under the age of three are not represented. Metric analysis indicates a moderate range of variation. The interproximal wear rates are low, and no evidence of tooth size associated differential survivorship can be demonstrated. The sample fits in a European evolutionary sequence of reducing posterior and expanding anterior permanent teeth, while the deciduous teeth seem to undergo expansion through the Würm glaciation.