Image of the Day: Murder Mystery

Head wounds in the fossilized skull of a Paleolithic man suggest foul play.

Chia-Yi Hou
Jul 5, 2019
The skull of the Paleolithic man shows a large depressed fracture.

Two head wounds on the fossilized skull of Paleolithic man suggest he died from the trauma, perhaps in a violent fight with another person, researchers reported in PLOS One on July 3. The skull was found in a cave in South Transylvania in 1941 and dates back about 33,000 years ago.

E.F. Kranioti et al., “State of the art forensic techniques reveal evidence of interpersonal violence ca. 30,000 years ago,” PLOS One, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0216718, 2019

Chia-Yi Hou is an intern at The Scientist. Email her at