Neanderthal man has a legendary status. His stocky, hairy, human-like figure, with heavy brow and receding chin, lumbers clumsily around in our collective imagination. But do we know who Neanderthal man really is? Was he our direct ancestor, or was he perhaps a more alien figure, not in the line of modern human descent at all, genetically very distinct - the victim rather than the driving force of the spread of humankind across the globe? The original Neanderthal bones were unearthed to great scholarly excitement in the Neander valley in Germany in the mid-19th century. This work brings together all the research into Homo sapiens neanderthalensis; into his world, his technology, his way of life (and death, even his beliefs), his origins and his relationship with us.