Hobbit new human species?

Updated on Aug 21, 2006 05:12 PM IST

A partial skeleton of a three-foot tall hominid discovered in 2003 in an Indonesian cave and nicknamed ?the Hobbit? is probably a new, dwarf species of human, said a study released on Thursday.

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HT Image
PTI | ByAFP, Washington

A partial skeleton of a three-foot tall hominid discovered in 2003 in an Indonesian cave and nicknamed “the Hobbit” is probably a new, dwarf species of human, said a study released on Thursday.

A team of scientists reached the conclusion after analysing the skull of the estimated 18,000-year-old skeleton, one of several unearthed two years ago on the eastern Indonesian island of Flores.

Scientists from the US, Australia and Indonesia compared the skull to those of humans, chimpanzees and other human ancestors to determine whether it was a pygmy form of human, a person whose growth was stunted by a growth disorder, or an entirely new species. The study was released on Science Express, the online edition of US journal Science.

However, a leading Indonesian anthropologist and Australian academic contest the study’s conclusions and argue that the Hobbit belongs to the Homo sapiens species. 

 

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