Horizontal Distance Between TMJ and MM

As discussed by Strait et al. (1997), this feature is of functional significance given that it approximates the load arm of molar bite force during mastication (Grine et al., 1993; also see M.A. Spencer, 1998, 1999). Strait et al. (1997) recognize two character states: long distance from TMJ to molar complex (= 0) and short distance (= 1). As such, all taxa have a relatively long distance between the TMJ and molar complex except for H. habilis, H. ergaster, and H. sapiens, in which it is considered short.

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