What does the shape of your skull say about you? In the 18th century, scientists and doctors believed the various contours to our skulls were clues to our souls. Back then, phrenology was a popular science that supposed the content of a person’s character was related to the shape of his skull. Hard to believe with today’s MRIs and brain scans that it was once accepted that the closeness of your eyes indicated your artistic talent. While a majority of phrenology was eventually written off, the idea that skull structure has a role in science rings true.
In a recent study, scientists attempted to categorize the shape of skulls in relation to the geographical region where they were found. While the study itself had trouble differentiating the skulls by region, the scientists were able to identify which skulls were male and which were female because male skulls tend to be larger. This could shed new light on how science will go about identifying and categorizing bones, as they can now include gender in their studies.
There are 22 bones in the skull, eight cranial and 14 facial bones. Even at birth, your skull is almost full sized, although the bones that make up your cranium aren’t fused together. By the time you are a toddler. your skull is fully formed, meaning that the skull you have as a child is the same one you take with you into adulthood.
This new research can help to accurately identify ancestral bones from long ago, shedding new light on the geographical locations of fossils as well as being able to determine the gender of the fossils in question. While the research is still in its early stages, it could certainly be a step toward a greater understanding of the history and background of humanity.