Neanderthals and Homo Sapiens have similar makeups, both physically and mentally.  Similar to Homo Sapiens, Neanderthals communicated, cared, gathered, and provided for each other.  Neanderthals became extinct through Pseudoextinction, meaning that they evolved into another species, the Homo Sapiens we have today.

Why watch this video?

  1. Have you ever wondered if Neanderthals really disappear at all?
  2. Would you like to know where Neanderthals fit into the timeline of human evolution?
  3. Have you ever been confused by how humans evolved into what they are today?

Key Terms

  • Homo Sapien – the name for humans that is scientifically used
  • Neanderthals – a former species of humans that existed between 120 000 to 35 000 years ago that is now extinct through pseudoextinction
  • Evolution – an organism becomes extinct because it has evolved into a completely different organism

Loose Ends

  1. Charles Darwin published his theory of evolution that basically stated that every living organism had to have evolved from an ancestor that possessed common traits.  This made it easier to visualize how Neanderthals were distantly related to Homo Sapiens and outlined their path of evolution.
  2. Neanderthals might have been endangered before Homo Sapiens showed up.  Scientists are taking an educated guess/assumption based on the evidence and extensive research that Neanderthals became extinct the way they did but there is no evidence that proves that they could have already been extinct previously for other reasons.
  3. Neanderthals used the arrowhead about 200 000 YA while Homo Sapiens used a similar tool that had progressed to a more advanced arrowhead 50 000 YA.  This is an example of how despite the things that Neanderthals and Homo Sapiens have in common, Homo Sapiens are more advanced.

Self-Test Questions

What are some physical differences between Neanderthals and Homo Sapiens

  • Answer A: Neanderthals have big eyes, big muscles, and short legs while Homo Sapiens have small eyes, small muscles, and long legs.
  • Answer B: Neanderthals have small noses, small muscles, long forearms & shins while Homo Sapiens have large noses, large muscles, short forearms & shins.
  • Answer C: Neanderthals have a large brow ridge, large nose, short forearms and shins, and large muscles while Homo Sapiens have a smaller brow ridge, smaller nose, long forearms and shins, and smaller muscles.
  • Answer D: Neanderthals have big feet and hands while Homo Sapiens have small teeth and smiles.

Correct Answer: Answer C

Neanderthals were more fit for the harsh weather conditions while Homo Sapiens are built for a warmer climate where they could be more active.

What is the common version of a gene shared between Homo Sapiens and Neanderthals?

  • Answer A: FOXP2
  • Answer B: DOGP1
  • Answer C: FOXP1
  • Answer D: CATP3

Correct Answer: Answer A

FOXP2 is a gene combination that is essential for language and communication which both Homo Sapiens and Neanderthals were able to use effectively in their lives.

Why did Neanderthals disappear after they met Homo Sapiens?

  • Answer A: An environmental impact caused the Neanderthals to die but the Homo Sapiens were built to survive.
  • Answer B: The Homo Sapiens were more technologically advanced meaning that they all worked together as tribes to gather resources and dominate the land.  The Neanderthals couldn’t catch up to their advancements and died off.
  • Answer C: Neanderthals got bombed by the neighbouring land but the Homo Sapiens were safe because they were far enough away.
  • Answer D: Homo Sapiens directly killed the Neanderthals because they didn’t want to have competition in the future.

Correct Answer: Answer B

Neanderthals were not as advanced as the Homo Sapiens.  Their technology/supplies and their communication skills were not as progressive as they needed to be in comparison to the Homo Sapiens in order to survive.

How many years ago did Homo Sapiens walk the planet with H. Floresiensis, Neanderthals, Denisovans (three other human species)?

  • Answer A: 20 000 years ago
  • Answer B: 50 000 years ago
  • Answer C: 2 Ga
  • Answer D: 1.5 Ma

Correct Answer: Answer A

As recently as 20 000 years ago, Homo Sapiens were on the planet with three other human species.

What did Ernst Haeckel try to name Homo Sapiens?

  • Answer A: Homo Saliens
  • Answer B: Hobo Sapiens
  • Answer C: Homo Stupidus
  • Answer D: Homo Smartus

Correct Answer: Answer C

Ernst Haeckel tried to name Homo Sapiens this because of their ancestor’s lack of inteligence.

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Item Credit: It's Okay To Be Smart - PBS

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