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The Furfooz, Furfooz race or Grenelle-Furfooz Men, alongside the Cro-Magnon and Grimaldi Man were the first anatomically modern humans of the European Upper Palaeolithic.


In 1866 in the cave of Trou de la Naulette, within the village Furfooz in the Belgian province of Namur, the archaeologist Édouard Dupont discovered a prehistoric lower jaw. A further excavation the following year led to the discovery of other cranial remains, including a complete skull. Of these two crania, one was brachycephalic (round-headed), while another mesocephalic.[1] In scientific literature from the late 19th and early 20th century, the skulls from Furfooz were considered to represent a round-headed early racial type in Upper Paleolithic Europe, distinct to the Cro-Magnon and ancestral to the Alpine race.[citation needed]


The remains at Furfooz are dated to the Magdalenian period, or slightly earlier from 20,000 - 15,000 years ago.[2][3]

Racial Identification[edit]

The crania at Furfooz were linked in earlier scientific sources to another brachycephalic skull (but dated to the early Neolithic) which was unearthed at Grenelle (Paris, France) in 1870.[4][5][6] In the scientific literature of John Lubbock (1890), Samuel Laing (1892), Arthur Keith (1912), Henry Fairfield Osborn (1916), Madison Grant (1918) and Amadeus William Grabau (1921) the findings became known as the "Grenelle-Furfooz Men" or "Furfooz race". Earlier Quatrefages de Bréau in his Crania Ethnica (1875) popularised the view that the brachycephalic (round-headed) Grenelle-Furfooz Men were a distinct racial type to the dolichocephalic (long-headed) Cro-Magnons and prognathic Grimaldi Man. However the cranial index of the Grenelle and Furfooz skulls were different, as one of the Furfooz crania was not broad, but mesocephalic. Paul Broca (1877) thus proposed that the mesocephalic crania of the Upper Paleolithic was the result of admixture between the long-headed Cro-Magnons and the broad-headed Furfooz race. Giuseppe Sergi in his work The Mediterranean Race (1901) however rejected this view (p. 192) but it was generally agreed that the crania at Grenelle and Furfooz were ancestral to the broad-headed Alpine race.


  1. ^ Dupont, E. (1872) "Sur les crânes de Furfooz", Compte-rendu du Congrès de Préhistoire, 6 : 555-559.
  2. ^ Human Origins: a Manual of Prehistory, Vol. 1, George Grant MacCurdy, D. Appleton and company, 1926, pp. 433-445.
  3. ^ "Late Magdalenian chronology and faunal exploitation in the North-Western Ardennes", Ruth Charles, Archaeopress, 1998, p.137f.
  4. ^ "Our Remote Ancestry", Alexander Winchell, The North American Review, Vol. 139, No. 334, Sep., 1884, pp. 246-255.
  5. ^ Paleontology, Edward Wilber Berry, 1929.
  6. ^ Popular Science, Mar 1894, Vol. 44, No. 44, p. 633.