Gerasimov Mikhail Mikhailovich. Mesolithic man from Yuzhny Oleniy (Southern Reindeer) Island (Onega Lake).

Mesolithic man from Yuzhny Oleniy (Southern Reindeer) Island (Onega Lake)
Collection MAE RAS: № 6080-28
Image ID: 1241788213
Museum inventory number:
№ 6080-28
Mesolithic man from Yuzhny Oleniy (Southern Reindeer) Island (Onega Lake)
Gerasimov Mikhail Mikhailovich
Reconstruction date:
circa 1956
Yuzhny Oleniy Island, situated in the northeastern part of Lake Onega, is the location of a huge cemetery excavated by V.I. Ravdonikas in 1936-38. Ravdonikas and his colleagues attributed the cemetery to the late Neolithic. Gerasimov, however, argued that the site is much earlier, dating to the early Neolithic or even Mesolithic. Recent science-based (radiocarbon) dating techniques demonstrated that he was right: Yuzhny Oleniy indeed dates to the Mesolithic (7th – 6th millennia BC).The poorly preserved male cranium from burial 1 was restored. Like the cranium from burial 12 (see 6080-14), it reveals predominantly Mongoloid features whereas Caucasoid ones are traceable as an admixture. In Gerasimov’s words, the man resembled Bronze Age inhabitants of Lake Baikal area (see no. 6080-13). People with such an appearance, as he claimed, were migrants from Siberia or their descendants admixed with ancient Europeans. This hypothesis was convincingly supported by new genetic data. The mitochondrial DNA extracted from the bones of Yuzhny Oleniy people links them to modern western and central Siberians – Selkup and Kets, but also to the aborigines of northern Europe, specifically Sami.
Reconstructing the appearance of ancient and medieval humans, Plastic reconstructions