Modern Humans and Neandertals in Israel
The caves in Mt. Carmel have yielded a large group of human remains from the so-called Paleolithic Age. The B levels of the "cave of the Kids," Mugharet es-Skhül and the C level of the larger "oven" cave, Mugharet et-Tabün yielded the principal finds. They were excavated between 1929 - 1934 by a team led by D.A.E. Garrod of the British School of Archaeology in Jerusalem and T. McCown of the American School. The fauna  (animal bones) recovered in the Skhül cave deposit at the B levels were almost identical to those recovered in Level C of the Tabün cave. The stone tools ,  were almost indistinguishable in their workmanship. These discoveries led the original researchers to believe the two levels were contemporary. Since this time there has been much dispute on the subject because the Skhül remains are essentially modern while the Tabün remains are very archaic and Neandertal-like. In western Europe, Neandertals always preceded modern humans, but not here. They were either contemporary or Tabün came second.
Mugharet es-SkhülFrom the B (B1 and B2) level of es-Skhül, most important of all the levels, they uncovered the remains of at least ten men, women, and children. The skeletal remains at Skhül were numbered by Roman numerals I through X and some are very fragmentary. The following were studied and x-rayed by Cuozzo in the Rockefeller Museum (Jerusalem) and the Peabody Museum (Harvard University): Skhül I, II, IV, V1 VI, VII, and VIII.
It is known that the partial lower jaw of Skhül I came from a child because of the absence of erupted permanent teeth. It has been reconstructed with artificial material in thc area of the chin and lower front teeth. Tillier  reported that the bone of this lower jaw was more robust (stronger, thicker) than the modern child's lower jaw at the same age (approximately four years) and that the unerupted permanent first molar has the heavy enamel folding of Neandertals. Cuozzo disagrees and describes this lower jaw as essentially modern except for the permanent first molar crown form. Cuozzo also offers one reservation when evaluating ancient children; he believes we must be very cautious when using modern children's standards to determine the rate of development or age of death of ancient children.  It is a well-known fact that modern children are aging much faster than children of just a few hundred years ago. , Therefore, we must be aware that the first molar which erupts in modern children around the age of six years of age could not possibly have done so in ancient children. It is therefore reasonable to assume that Skhül I was older than the four years assigned by Tillier and the discoverers McCown and Keith. 
Cuozzo believes that this child was not a Neandertal and assigns it a position with the group devolved from Neandertals that we call modem man (Homo sapiens) on the basis of the form (cynodont) of its primary second molar (milk tooth). Because all Neandertal children had taurodont primary molars that did not exfoliate (fall out) until their late 20s and early 30s, this primary molar does not qualify as Neandertal. Although the heavy folding of the biting surface enamel of the lower permanent first molar does appear to be a characteristic similar to all Neandertal adult molars. This combination presents a seemingly inexplicable problem. However, it does have a solution when you view it from a Biblical perspective and not an evolutionary one.
The fall of Adam and Eve resulted in a physical degeneration from Adam to present-day men and women. Children mature faster  and men and women die earlier since the rebellion in the Garden of Eden. Evolution says that we're going somewhere. The Biblical account in Genesis through Numbers  demonstrates that we're going downhill.  Skhül I child was on the way towards an earlier maturation than his parents were. He or she showed this devolved trait by the shape of the baby molar tooth and roots. However, since he or she still bore the Neandertal molar folded enamel, the specimen represents a mosaic of ancient and modern traits. Its skull was immature in development and had a modern shape also. There was no brow ridge development or sinus enlargement between the eyes at the root of the nose.
The B level yielded another important discovery, an adult male: the Skhül V remains. The skull and lower jaw had some long bones and ribs from the rest of the skeleton associated with it, but it is the skull that is the most important discovery. It is mostly complete with the exception of the bones of the nose and cheeks and some of the upper jaw. This has all been filled in with an artificial plastic-like material. The shape of the skull (cranium) is modern in most parts with the exception of a slightly elevated brow-ridge which in this case, according to Cuozzo , could be exaggerated. It has a chin on its lower jaw. All its teeth are worn down but have modern root-form. The general shape of the crowns of the teeth is the same as modern man with the exception of the upper third molars. These teeth  have not lost their fourth cusp (hypocone) as have the majority of modern  man's upper third molars. So in this instance they are not as devolved as modern man. The upper permanent incisors have lost their accessory ridges for strength and durability, and the molars have lost their taurodont (bull-like) form of the Neandertal type. This analysis of Skhül V again presents a mosaic of traits that reveal a man who was buried in a cave in Palestine supposedly 100,000 - 80,000 years ago  according to the latest determination. However, an earlier study had placed Level B at a dating  range of 33,000 to 55,000 years BP.
The Skhül V cranium shows traces of red ochre on it. It also appears as if an attempt was made to minimize this effect because the filling material used to cement and buiId up the missing portions has been flecked with a rust, brownish-red dye. Red Ochre is an iron oxide called hematite and is mainly known from the Mesopotamian civilizations around 2000 - 4000 BC.  No record of it has been reported from a burial allegedly this old. In European caves, it has been found on the walls and in handprints on those walls. Cuozzo  found this red ochre powder on the lower jaw of La Ferrassie I, a Neandertal adult from France who was buried  in a nearly identical pose as the Skhül V skeleton, on his back, head turned to the left (Skhül V head more upright), legs tightly flexed with knees pointing to the right. Similar burial customs usually mean tribal relationships. He also found red ochre on a cave  wall in south France in the form of a handprint.
In the arms of Skhül V was found a large jawbone of a wild boar. We recall that Samson used a jawbone of a donkey  as a lethal weapon to fight against the Philistines in this same land. Could this wild boar jawbone have been used in the same way during the life of Skhül V and buried with him as a remembrance of his fighting skill?
From the "cave of the oven," a skeleton of an old Neandertal woman was recovered from the C layer. It is called Tabün C - l. Cuozzo studied the skull and lower jaw of this woman in the British Museum in London. Cuozzo also x-rayed other loose Tabün teeth from the same level at the Peabody Museum, Harvard University. Tabün C - 1 skull and lower jaw had Neandertal features in the size of the eye sockets, nasal opening, slanted cheekbones, and shape of head, taurodont molars, and apparent chinlessness. The size of the head indicated it was a female in that it was smaller than the Neandertal norm for overall cranial capacity.
Level C was dated in 1963 by radiocarbon at 40,000 BP ± 1000 years,  in 1979 by sediment studies at 51,000 years,  by amino acid testing in 1982 at 51,000 years,  and in 1982 again at 50,000 - 60,000 years.  Identical stone tools  were found in Layer C of Tabün as were found in Layers B1 and B2 of the Skhül cave. The faunal  (animal remains) were essentially the same. The conclusion of the 1980s was that these levels B of Skhül and C of Tabün were contemporaneous. Now it is thought from new dating techniques which the experts assure us are better (how do they really know?), that Tabün C level could be as much as 200,000 to 90,000 years old. 
This new date for Tabün doesn't mean that they weren't contemporaneous, but it does cast cold water on the idea. Why is this a problem for them? Simply because the older evolutionists would have liked to see a nice passage of archaic Neandertal features into a modern Homo sapiens (us) to make evolution smooth and have what they "now" call regional continuity. I emphasize the word "now" because the multiregional  evolutionary paleoanthropologists are the new version of these older evolutionists. They would expect that this phenomenon happened all over the world with all moderns going through a Neandertal "phase."
Nevertheless, because of other skulls that were discovered in Israel's caves at much later dates, some Paleoanthropologists believed that they had to come up with a replacement theory that allowed for abrupt changes in the fossil layers from modern to Neandertal or vice versa. Replacement theory allowed modern men to migrate into an area and replace Neandertals without mating, or Neandertals to wander in after moderns had been there for many years and settled at a later date. No major evolution had to take place in the area for this to be true. One population replaces another.
Now, the reason for this strange logic is because two other rather obvious Neandertal discoveries higher up in the sedimentary levels and more recent in time made it necessary for them to squirm out from under these uncomfortable facts. These burial records of ancient Israel pointed to the Biblical explanation as the best one of them all and will be explained at the end of this article.
In 1961, a Japanese team digging in a cave in the Wadi Amud about 31 miles from Mt. Carmel near the Sea of Galilee, discovered a shattered Neandertal adult skeleton so high up in the stratigraphy that it had Upper Paleolithic artifacts and even pottery associated with it.  Obviously, Amud I was a recent Neandertal. The oldest dates they could get on this level  were 27,000 years BP ± 1000. The youngest were radiocarbon dates of 5710 years BP ± 80. He was a man of about six feet tall with a cranial capacity (brain size) of 1740 ml in volume.  A huge skull by modern standards. Consider that modern men and women are between 1200 and 1500 ml. New dating revisions had to be found for this dilemma, and they did come up with a new date: 50,000 years BP which was taken from ESR (Electron Spin Resonance) on a mammal tooth.  Cuozzo studied and x-rayed this fossil skull and cranium and found it to be very fragmentary and pieced together with great liberty  and imagination, although in general, the shape and size are almost accurate.
The Kebara 2 skeleton also found on Mt. Carmel presented similar problems with more recent dating than Skhül and Tabün. He was a full-fledged Neandertal found in 1983  with modern stone tools, Kebara 2 had the only hyoid  bone ever found for a Neandertal and the most complete hip bones.
The explanations of regional continuity don't fit the data because the moderns preceded the ancients and it has to be reversed for continuity to be true. The replacement theory merely brings in modern man from Africa at an early date and establishes the presence of two separate species of man in Israel contemporaneously. No mating or genetic mixing of these groups is supposed to have taken place. That is practically impossible. Did they fight? Cuozzo sees no way they could not have fought if this truly is the right theory. Observe the Middle East Conflict today.
In conclusion, it should be firmly stated that the Bible gives us the best explanation for the presence of modern skeletons buried beneath more archaic or Neandertal skeletons. Cuozzo  has found physical evidence in Neandertals that the degeneration of man since the fall has resulted in the decrease in longevity that has been so graphically illustrated in Genesis 11, from Shem who lived to 600 years of age to Abraham who lived to 175 years. In general, the more archaic the skull and lower jaw, the older it is. The more modem appearing skulls and their jaws are usually younger in age at death.
The older men of Genesis 11 over 400 years (Arpachshad, Shelah, and Eber) should all have been buried at higher levels (more recent) than the younger men around 200 years (Peleg, Rue, Serug, and Nahor). This burial arrangement would put men with very aged Neandertal-like features at later levels and later dates in time than the earlier more modern-appearing men. The more modern-like men could very well be classified as Homo sapiens sapiens while the very aged ones could be termed Neandertals. It would appear as if more than one species of man lived at the same period of time, with the modern ones preceding the more archaic ones. The Biblical record is the best guide for studying the ancient burials of Israel.
3. B. Vandermeersch, "The Evolution of Modern Humans: Recent Evidence from Southwest Asia," in The Human Revolution by C. Stringer and P. Mellars (Princeton, NJ, Princeton University Press. 1989), pp. 156 - 164. Return to Text
4. A.M. Tillier. "The evolution of modern humans: young Mousterian individuals," The Human Revolution, C. Stringer and P. Mellars (Princeton, NJ, Princeton University Press, 1989), pp. 286 - 297.Return to Text
10. Numbers 36: 1 - 13. Moses commanded the daughters of Zelophahad to marry their first cousins since they had no brothers to inherit their land. Marriage outside of the family tribe would have meant lost land at the Jubilee. In modern times, this would have been called a consanguineous marriage resulting in high risk of congenitally defective children because of the matching up of similar recessive genes. In Moses' time, it was consanguineous also, but relatively harmless. This would have been the case since the human genome had not deteriorated as much as it has today. This is why Cain could many his sister. Return to Text
11. An Arab-Israeli community of Taibe, Israel, was studied by researchers in 1992 and 1994 from the Felsenstein Research Institute. They found 44% of marriages to be consanguinous and 22% of them between first cousins. Their results out of 610 families were that 15.8% of the children born in these first-cousin marriages were birth defected. Return to Text
16. P. Masters, "An amino acid racemization chronology for Tabün. In the Transition from the Lower to Middle Paleolithic and the Origin of Modern Man"151, pp.41 - 54. Ed. A Ronen. Oxford: British Archaeological Reports. International Series. Return to Text
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