Again, a story about another study purporting to show how smart Neandertals were. This one apparently showed that Neandertals would hunt herd animals such as reindeer/caribou in more "open" or "colder" areas, but in more "forested" and "warmer" areas, they would hunt single animals. My reaction? Oh duh! I've seen reports of studies like this for years! They used different stone tools and weapons in different places over time, and there is plenty of evidence over time, sometimes at the same sites, that the kind of stuff they brought home to their humble caves for dinner, varied over time. They also were quite capable of figuring out how to haft points to wooden handles, and even figured out how to make "binding glue" out of birch pitch in Germany and tar in Israel! I realize there are some workers who, more or less "terminally" consider Neandertals were "stupid" and "inferior", when, in fact, they seem to have been quite adaptable to changing circumstances. But that doesn't make them stupid, no matter how some people might wish them to have been.
Some of you might ask what all of this has to do with my Great Medieval Science Fiction Masterpiece,or why I write so much about Neandertals. Well, I'll tell you why. First,look at the picture at the top of the blog. My heroine, Illg, looks something like her, only a lot more neatly put together(even in the supposedly "filthy" Middle Ages -- see my "Flabbergasted" post for more on that!), and she's quite smart and adaptable,even a bit stubborn. Of course, she's only 15 or so when the story starts out, and teenagers. . . well, she gets into a fair amount of trouble by making some impulsive, though ultimately good, choices. . . .