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At Home with the Neanderthals – Lunch Hour Lectures on tour

By Katherine Aitchison, on 12 June 2012

For the month of June 2012, the UCL Lunch Hour Lecture series has gone on tour to the British Museum and it was a sold out audience that awaited the first lecture of the series on Thursday 7June.

Most of the lectures are being held in the rather plush BP Lecture Theatre, which gives the event the feeling of a high-class university experience with its armed leather seats and its shiny red walls.

So, there was a real air of expectation as Dr Matt Pope of the UCL Institute of Archaeology took to the stage to tell us about his research into Neanderthal man’s living arrangements. And he delivered not only a fascinating insight into the development of Neanderthal dwellings but also into the very purpose and meaning of archaeology.

The invisible man
Dr Pope began by taking us back 600,000 years to the time of Homo heidelbergensis the suspected common ancestor of both us and Neanderthal man. He did so to demonstrate how “archaeologically invisible” Heidelberg man was.