Neanderthal Flute, Hugh Ross and the ASA

Glenn Morton (
Thu, 03 Apr 1997 22:33:55 -0600

There is a report today about a musicologist's examination of the
43,000-67,000 year old flute found by Ivan Turk in Northern Yugoslavia in
1995. The report can be found at
and can be accessed from

Bob Fink, a musicologist from Saskatoon, Canada, has concluded that the
instrument uses the same scale that forms the basis of all Western music.
The spacing of the holes allowed him to determine that the notes represent
the third, fourth, fifth and sixth notes of the diatonic scale. This is
based upon the non-uniform spacing of the holes, which match the spacing of
bone flutes made by modern men.

The object has now been bracketed by two dates, a 43,000 above based on C14
dating and 67,000 years below based on electron spin resonance dating of
some teeth.

For those interested, Hugh Ross responded to my note posted both on the ASA
and, I think, the Evolution reflector last year. His response is in his
newsletter this month, in an article "Response to Glenn Morton's Critique,"
Facts & Faith 11:1, page 6-7

He still holds that the object is a fire starter tool. I have not seen that
in the anthropological literature anywhere. Dr. Ross suggests that the
scorch marks would not be evidenced on the bone but the fire would have been
started on the wood below with the bone being the upper brace, holding the
twirled stick steady. If one twirls a stick fast enough to start a fire on
wood, you will scorch the upper brace. Friction works on both ends of the
twirled stick.

One correction that honesty forces me to correct, Dr. Ross's organization
did not get my qualifications correct. They call me "Dr. Glenn Morton a
geologist, and supporter of Reasons To Believe."

I am a supporter of what Hugh is doing in the area of astronomy and I
appreciate it. But I am neither a Dr. nor a geologist. I am a gadfly. My
diploma reads Bachelors of Science in Physics, which required lots of extra
physics but not enough to become a Ph. D. Secondly, my present title is
Manager of Geophysics for the Western US Offshore. In the past I have been
Chief Geophysicist for China among other things. I correct this because I
do not want anyone to ever be able to claim that I puffed up my credentials.


Foundation, Fall and Flood