Site: Salé Species: H. erectus Year of Discovery: 1971  Discovered by: Quarrymen  Geological Age: Between 250,000 and 200,000 years old 
400,000 years old  Cultural Attribution: Developmental Age: Adult  Presumed Sex: Female  Preserved Skeletal Party: Cranium Preservation: Partial Preservation Details: Anatomical Description: Additional Notes:
Homo erectus Salé– also discovered in Morocco, not far from Jebel Irhoud – dates back to 250,000 years ago and might have coexisted with the early form ofHomo sapiens, although the identification and age of the Salé specimen remains highly debated.
Open-air site near Rabat (Morocco) in which a partial hominid skull was exposed by quarrying activities in 1971. These dunes are associated with the Middle Pleistocene Tensiftian transgression, tentatively dated to 400Ka. The Salé fossil may thus be similar in age to the nearby sites at the Thomas Quarries and Sidi Abderrahman. A small faunal assemblage was recovered in the same deposits, but no stone tools were found. The skull is small, with a cranial capacity of only ca. 900ml, but the vault is long, low, and relatively thick walled. Muscle markings are slight, suggesting derivation from a female individual. While most of these characters suggest assignment of the Salé skull to Homo erectus, there are also some more advanced characters that are found in Homo sapiens specimens. These include the basicranial proportions, an expanded parietal region, and a rounded occipital region with minimal development of an occipital torus. The occipital, however, is quite abnormal in its proportions, suggesting the presence of pathology. Because of its mosaic characteristics, the Salé skull’s classification is not generally agreed upon. Some workers regard it as an evolved H. erectus specimen, while others believe it represents an “archaic Homo sapiens.”
See also Africa, North; Archaic Homo sapiens; Homo erectus; Sidi Abderrahman; Thomas Quarries. [C.B.S., J.J.S.]