The Shanidar IV ‘Flower Burial’: a Re-evaluation of Neanderthal Burial Ritual

  title={The Shanidar IV ‘Flower Burial’: a Re-evaluation of Neanderthal Burial Ritual},
  author={Jeffrey D. Sommer},
  journal={Cambridge Archaeological Journal},
  pages={127 - 129}
  • J. Sommer
  • Published 1 April 1999
  • Biology
  • Cambridge Archaeological Journal
The cognitive abilities of Neanderthals have been the subject of lively debate for decades (Mellars 1996). In the early 1970s it was proposed that Burial IV of Shanidar Cave, an adult Neanderthal from Iraq, might have been laid to rest on a bed of flowers including yarrow, groundsels, grape hyacinth, and St Barnaby's thistle (Solecki 1971; 1975; LeroiGourhan 1975). Although challenged by some, the Shanidar IV data have been used to support the notion that Neanderthals felt 'the love of beauty… 
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