Surprise: Neanderthals Were Fine Housekeepers

Study finds they organized domestic space much like humans
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 3, 2013 5:09 PM CST
Surprise: Neanderthals Were Fine Housekeepers
This mural provided by the American Museum of Natural History depicts Neanderthal life.   (AP Photo/American Museum of Natural History)

Archeologists have unearthed more evidence that Neanderthals weren't the brutes their name suggests. Turns out, they kept well-organized caves, reports Phys.Org. Researchers working in Italy say the caves were separated into distinct areas—one at the rear used for butchering and preparing game, one near the middle with a hearth for meals and gatherings, and one near the front where they made stone tools, reports the Telegraph, which refers to Neanderthals as the "original homemakers."

"There has been this idea that Neanderthals did not have an organized use of space, something that has always been attributed to humans," says the lead author of the study from the University of Colorado at Denver. "But we found that Neanderthals did not just throw their stuff everywhere but in fact were organized and purposeful when it came to domestic space." Click to read about earlier research that found Neanderthals used more sophisticated tools than thought. (Read more Neanderthals stories.)

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