The mandible can provide valuable information on both the life history and genetic makeup of Archaic human populations. The following analysis tests two hypotheses: (a) that there are significant differences in morphology in mandibular shape between the genders amongst Archaic North American Homo sapiens and (b) that there is a significant difference in variance in mandibular shape between Archaic Windover and Point Hope.
A sample made from mandible specimens taken from both populations is subjected to Principal Component Analyses (PCA). The component scores from the PCAs are subjected to both a Multivariate Analysis of Covariance (mancova) and a general Multivariate Analysis of Variance (manova) to determine whether significant differences in variance exist between the sexes and the populations.
The mancova found that there are no significant interactions between the PC scores in population, sex, or size. Significant differences in variance were found between males and females and between the Windover and Point Hope populations.
Differences in variance observed between the populations are suspected to be due to differences in subsistence strategies and possibly non-masticatory utilizations of teeth. Differences in variance between the genders are suspected to be genetic in origin.