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Lozano M.,Iphes Institute Catala Of Paleoecologia Humana I Evolucio Social | Lozano M.,Rovira i Virgili University | Bermudez de Castro J.M.,Cenieh National Research Center Sobre Evolucion Humana | Bermudez de Castro J.M.,University College London | And 3 more authors.
Quaternary International | Year: 2015

Cultural dental wear provides useful information about the use of anterior teeth for non-masticatory purposes. Non-alimentary tasks are usually related to economic and cultural activities. The presence of cultural dental wear has been checked in four different Homo species from the Sierra de Atapuerca sites (Sima del Elefante, Gran Dolina-TD6, Sima de los Huesos and El Mirador cave). The chronology of these sites ranges from more than one million to 4000 years ago.Evidence of dental wear has been documented in the four Homo species analysed, confirming that hominins began using their teeth as tools as far back as one million years ago. Each species exhibits specific typologies and frequencies of dental wear features. Also, dental features are located on different dental surfaces and tooth types, indicating a diversity of activities carried out using the anterior teeth as a tool.The use of the teeth as a tool was a widespread habit in the genus Homo. However, the diversity of dental wear patterns can be related to cultural and economic activities, broadening our knowledge of the behaviour of ancient hominins. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd and INQUA. Source

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