Melbourne: Paleontologists have shown that the face of the creature dubbed "hobbit" looked surprisingly human, after recreating the visage of the vanished, pint-size human species.
In 2003, paleontologists excavated a curious, small skull from a cave on the Indonesian island of Flores.
Formally called Homo floresiensis, the species of three-foot-tall early humans likely vanished from Flores, and history, about 12,000 years ago.
Chimps don`t have human cheeks, so past reconstructions of the hobbit`s face botched its likely looks
Among the scientific debates about the hobbit is one over what they looked like.
Some researchers favour a more ape-like appearance and others see their looks as more like Homo erectus, an early human species more than 1.5 million years old.
However, some of the hobbit`s original discoverers suggest the hobbits had rather human-looking faces.
"Our facial approximation is primarily based on verified, peer reviewed research regarding the relationship between the skull and its soft tissues," the study led by Susan Hayes of Australia`s University of Wollongong, written with her colleagues, Thomas Sutikna and the recently deceased Mike Morwood, leaders of the original hobbit discovery team, said.
Basically, chimps don`t have human cheeks, the study argues, so past reconstructions of the hobbit`s face botched its likely looks.
The study is set to be published in the Journal of Archaeological Science.