Testing these remains by application of the tongue the degree of adhesion indicated loss of the original gelatine, and the specific gravity was greater than that of recent human bone. I consequently submitted to my Colleague, Dr. Walter Flight, F.R.S., who had kindly added the results of his experienced analytic skill to my comparisons of pleistocene fossils from Australia, 3/ the shaft of one of the tibiae of the palaeolithic skeleton with the corresponding part of the recent human bone, and I subjoin the following result:- “In examining the portion of the human skeleton from the ‘Tilbury Excavations ‘ I have employed the method which I used, in 1870, when examining the jaw-bone of <u>Diprotodon australis <\u>, and a description of which will be found in the ‘Letter ‘ incorporated in your Paper on ‘Fossil Mammals ‘ in the ‘Philosophical Transactions ‘ of that year (Vol. c to f, p.p. 572-3). The human bone is considerably altered in appearance and character: it is of a fine dark brown colour and is readily reduced to powder in an iron mortar. When heated, water and oily matter are evolved, and it turns black or nearly so. Treated with soda-lime a large quantity of ammonia is given off. The density of the bone is 2.138, that of the recent tibia was found to be 1.985. Treated for twenty-two hours in the cold with the requisite amount of hydrochloric acid, of specific gravity 1.04, it was found that:- of these were dissolved 86.98 […]ble organic matter -(Schewer’s Kestron’s osseine) 11.63 […]able mineral matter, silica, &c. 1.39 100.00 [The] part dissolved consists of lime-phosphate, carbonate, &c. The insoluble […] removed by heating, 11.63 per cent. comes next that found by Fremy in fossil bones from the Oreston caves. He found in the external part of a metatarsal 10.3 per [cent] and in the internal part 11.0 per cent. Fremy also found in Rhinoceros-ribs from […], Gers, of silica and fluorides 1.4 per cent. I send you some of the […]ed bone.” (Signed Walter Flight ).
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Description of Parts of a Human Skeleton from Pleistocene (Paleolithic) Bed, Tilbury, Essex, 1883. From The Royal Society, AP/62/6
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