Meet Dragon Man: Reconstructing the Face of Ancient Asian Human

Meet Dragon Man. So, there’s this anthropologist and 3D designer from Brazil, Cireco Moraes, who just did something pretty wild. He reconstructed the face of an ancient human called Homo longi based on a skull found in Harbin, northeast China, in 1933. Let’s dive into the deets.

Homo Longi: The Dragon Man

Alright, so Homo longi, aka Dragon Man, lived it up in Asia during the middle Pleistocene era. The skull they found in China, in Harbin to be precise, is estimated to be around a whopping 148,000 years old. That’s some serious ancient history.

The Harbin Discovery

The Dragon Man’s skull was discovered during a bridge construction project in the Songhua River, Harbin. Now, Harbin is no tropical paradise; it’s a city known for being ice-cold, literally. The skull was a bit of a mystery because, unfortunately, the way they found it wasn’t exactly a textbook example. So, the exact location and fossil layers? Yeah, nobody knows.

The Big Deal About Dragon Man

What makes Dragon Man stand out is the size of that noggin. This skull is bigger than any other ancient human’s, and it’s got a unique shape – kinda long, a bit on the low side, and the braincase isn’t as round as modern humans. Think big brain vibes but with a twist.

Brainy Stats

The brain capacity in Dragon Man’s skull is estimated to be around 1,420 ml. That’s roughly similar to Neanderthals and Homo sapiens’ brain capacity but larger than other Homo ancestors. It’s like Dragon Man had a brain with a bit more room for ideas.

The Face Reveal

Now, onto the cool part – Moraes didn’t stop at the skull. They did some high-tech stuff, like computer tomography scans on the Harbin skull, Homo sapiens, Homo erectus, and even our chimp pals, Pan troglodytes. It’s like CSI, but for ancient faces. – koin303

How They Did It

Moraes took measurements and compared stuff with other species. They used a complete Homo erectus skull to fill in the gaps for Dragon Man’s jaw and teeth that were missing in action. Even the remaining molars played a role in figuring out the other teeth and sockets in the upper jaw. It’s like putting together an ancient face puzzle.

Forensic Face Magic

Moraes explains that this face reconstruction is like a cool forensic trick. It’s what detectives do when they have bits and pieces and need to figure out what someone looked like. In this case, reconstructing the missing jaw and teeth was crucial to get the Dragon Man’s face on point.

The Lowdown

So, Moraes’ findings got published in a journal called OrtogOnlineMag. Dragon Man, with his big brain and unique features, is like a time-traveling VIP guest. While the discovery might not have a red carpet, it sure gives us a glimpse into the ancient past of Homo longi. And who knows, maybe Dragon Man had some ancient wisdom to drop on us.