Simian shelf

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The simian shelf is a bony thickening on the front of the ape mandible.[1] Its function is to reinforce the jaw,[2] though it also has the effect of considerably reducing the movement of the tongue by restricting the area available for muscles.[3]

Humans are the only primates to have protruding chins, though some fossils of early humans show evidence of a simian shelf.[4]


  1. ^ "Simian shelf". Unabridged (v 1.1). Random House. Retrieved 2008-12-22. 
  2. ^ Wright, M. (1996). "Online Anthropology Glossary". Archived from the original on 2006-08-30. Retrieved 2008-12-22. 
  3. ^ Howells, W. (1945). Mankind So Far. New York: Doubleday. p. 68. 
  4. ^ Custance, A. C. (1997). "The Implication of Convergence on Human Origins". Convergence and the Origin of Man. Retrieved 2008-12-22.