The cave of Artenac is located about 20 km northeast of Angouleme, in the commune of Saint-Mary (Charente). In 1995 and 1996, two fragmentary hominine skull bones, a maxilla and a frontal, were uncovered during excavations in Mousterian levels of the cave. Biostratigraphic analyses of the abundant mammalian fauna place the Mousterian occupation of the cave at the beginning of Oxygen Isotope Stage 5. Although both bones come from adults, aspects of their morphology indicate they could derive from two individuals of different ages at death. The two bones are relatively fragmentary, but sufficient detail has been preserved, including an inflated maxillary region lacking an infra-orbital depression (or fossa canina) and the shape of the forehead, to establish their identity as Neandertals.
Human evolution, Mousterian, Neandertals, Frontal, Maxilla, Charente, France