New Fossil Anthropoid Skull from South Africa

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Abstract

IT is nearly twelve years ago since Prof. R. A. Dart startled the world by the announcement of the discovery of a new type of fossil anthropoid found in a limestone cave at Taungs in Bechuana-land, South Africa. The specimen consists of most of the brain cast and the practically perfect face of a very young ape. The functional teeth are all of the milk set, though the first upper and lower molars have cut the gum but do not yet meet. Though the ape was only very young, Dart estimated the cranial capacity at more than 500 c.c, and considered that in an adult it might exceed 700 c.c. He believed that this little fossil ape is not very closely allied to either the chimpanzee or the gorilla, and that it is probably nearer to the ape from which man has been descended and thus to be practically the long sought for missing link.

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