Human skull unearthed in Noordhoek

A pre-colonial skull believed to be over 350 years old was found during a beach clean-up at the weekend.

A human skull was unearthed in Noordhoek during a beach clean-up excursion on 18 April 2015. Picture: Glenn Ashton Ekogaia via Twitter

CAPE TOWN - A human skull, recently unearthed from beneath the Noordhoek sand dunes in Cape Town, is believed to belong to a teenager who lived as a hunter-gatherer more than 350-years-ago.

The archaeological treasure was discovered by a member of the Noordhoek Environmental Action Group during a beach clean-up excursion at the weekend.

Archaeologist Tim Hart was brought in to examine the skull and found it to belong to a young adult from the pre-colonial era.

"Briefly examining the cranium we noticed the molars were quite worn and it was quite a young person. In pre-colonial times people ingested quite a lot of grits in their food, then you would get the characteristic flattening or wearing out of the molars or the teeth."

Hart believes the young man might have belonged to a hunter-gatherer group indigenous to the Cape.

"There has been Kwena and QweQwe groups inhabiting the Cape Peninsula and since the Dutch started putting up farms in the late 1600, the expectation is that groups of indigenous people must have been living there at that time."

LISTEN: _ Archaeologist Tim Hart speaks on the discovery of a human skull believed to belong to a teenager who lived as a hunter-gatherer more than 350-years-ago. _