Neanderthals had the intelligence to build and use hunting weapons that kept them at a safe distance from their prey, archaeologists have found.
The discovery was made after scientists at University College London made replicas of 300,000-year-old spears and trained javelin athletes to throw them.
They established that the weapons could hit a target at a range of 20 metres with easily enough force to kill a large animal.
The finding, published in the journal Scientific Reports, further rescues the reputation of the neanderthal from that of a brutish, unsophisticated early cousin to homo sapien.
It follows recent studies which suggested neanderthals lived as part of supportive social networks,…