Intentional Craniofacial Remodelling in Europe in the XIX th Century: Quantitative Evidence of Soft Tissue Modifications from Toulouse, France
20 Pages Posted: 13 Dec 2021
Intentional skull deformations have been practiced by every human population, since the prehistoric times until the XXth century. In Europe, they were specifically prevalent in the region of Toulouse, France. The soft-tissue modifications due to such practices are not well characterized in the literature due to the rarity of photographic data. Most studies on skull deformations are thus based on skeletal remains. Here we performed a controlled geometric morphometric assessment of 31 frontal pictures and 70 lateral pictures of individuals from Toulouse with intentional deformations extracted from two XIXth century historical French photographic archives. We measured the forces exerted on the skull vault by the traditional deformation device used Toulouse using a 3D-printed skull and pressure sensors. We showed that individuals with Toulouse deformations have distinctive facial features, caused by moderate forces exerted on the skull vault. Our results exhibit and quantify for the first time the real face of intentional skull deformations, which are a ubiquitous and distinctive feature of the human species.
Keywords: artificial skull deformation, intentional skull deformation, morphometric geometrics
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