Subnasal alveolar morphology and the systematic position of Sivapithecus

Steven C. Ward, William H. Kimbel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

85 Scopus citations


Recent collecting in the Potwar Plateau of Pakistan has produced several new maxillae attributable to Sivapithecus. Since the subnasal region is preserved in most of these specimens, comparisons with early Miocene hominoid and Pliocene hominid maxillae become possible. On the basis of these comparisons, it has become clear that subnasal/premaxillary morphology distinguishes Asian and African hominoids. Ramapithecus and Sivapithecus share with Pongo an “Asian” subnasal pattern. The Proconsul species from the early Miocene of western Kenya and Australopithecus afarensis from the Hadar Formation of Ethiopia present two subsets of an “African” subnasal pattern. We think it likely that Ramapithecus and Sivapithecus represent a lineage that postdates the last common ancestor of African and Asian hominoids.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)157-171
Number of pages15
JournalAmerican journal of physical anthropology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1983
Externally publishedYes


  • Australopithecus
  • Nasal cavity
  • Premaxilla
  • Ramapithecus
  • Sivapithecus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Anthropology


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