The specimen reported here presents a rare form of dental variant—a permanent, mandibular labial canine talon cusp. This anomaly has not previously been reported in the clinical or archaeological literatures and is currently unique. The affected individual is an adult male from the Early Holocene cemetery of Gobero located in the Sahara Desert in the Republic of Niger. The age of this site (ca. 9500 bp) makes this the first archaeological case of labial talon cusp from Africa and the oldest reported talon cusp of any kind (lingual or labial, maxillary or mandibular, incisor or canine) in the world. Previous case studies, population frequency data, sexual dimorphism patterns and distribution within the dentition are discussed for labial talon cusp. The morphological aetiology of talon cusps is reviewed with respect to this specimen. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.