Believe it or not, there was an ancient human that has been nicknamed “the Hobbit” based on the remains of the 3-foot (1-meter) tall, 30-year-old female uncovered in the Liang Bua cave on the remote Indonesian island of Flores in 2003. So JRR Tolkien might not have been too far off in when he got down to creating his middle earth midgets.
Well now those ancient Florentine’s remains have been fleshed into a set of features by anthropologist Susan Hayes, a senior research fellow at University of Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia.
“She’s not what you’d call pretty, but she is definitely distinctive,”
said Hayes, who worked on the 18,000-year-old skeleton, officially known as Homo floresiensis. Hayes revealed The Hobbit face at the Australian Archaeological Conference being held from Dec. 9-13 at the University of Wollongong, where Hayes is an honorary senior research fellow. Using the term “facial approximation” as opposed to “facial reconstruction” for her work, the anthropologist said she was pleased with results, though the science community have continued to debate whether the specimen actually represents an extinct species in the human family tree.
A diminutive offshoot of Homo erectus, a 1.8-million-year-old hominid and the first to have body proportions comparable to those of modern Homo sapiens, has been optioned and detractors of the theory argue that the remains could belonged to a human with microcephalia, a condition characterized by a small head, short stature and some mental retardation.
A 2007 study revealed however that the Hobbit’s brain was about one-third the size of a modern adult human’s brain and thus its brain region ratios were inconsistent with those characteristic of microcephalia. And The Hobbit nickname originates from the skeletons tiny ass status, just in case that passed anyone by.
hobbits, homo floresiensis, lord of the rings, the hobbit