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


In 1866, the archaeologist Édouard Dupont discovered a prehistoric lower jaw in the Trou de la Naulette, a cave near the village of Furfooz in the Belgian province of Namur. 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) and another was 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 from 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. ^ MacCurdy, George Grant (1926). Human Origins: a Manual of Prehistory. 1. D. Appleton and company. pp. 433–445. 
  3. ^ Charles, Ruth (1998). Late Magdalenian chronology and faunal exploitation in the North-Western Ardennes. Archaeopress. pp. 137f. 
  4. ^ Winchell, Alexander (September 1884). "Our Remote Ancestry". The North American Review. 139 (334): 246–255. 
  5. ^ Berry, Edward Wilber (1929). Paleontology. 
  6. ^ Wikisource-logo.svg "Fossil Man". Popular Science Monthly. 44: 633. March 1894. 

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