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Dig reveals mammoth skeleton in France

By The Associated Press

This article was published November 7, 2012 at 12:20 p.m.

this-photo-dated-oct-30-2012-released-wednesday-nov-7-2012-by-archeological-group-inrap-shows-unidentified-archeologists-working-along-the-changis-sur-marne-riverbank-about-30-miles-east-of-paris-after-unearthing-the-rare-near-complete-skeleton-of-a-mammoth-which-has-been-christened-helmut-the-remains-which-include-four-connected-vertebrae-and-a-complete-pelvis-dating-back-some-200000-50000-years-ago-were-discovered-by-accident-during-excavations-at-an-ancient-roman-site

This photo dated Oct. 30, 2012, released Wednesday Nov. 7, 2012, by archeological group Inrap, shows unidentified archeologists working along the Changis-sur-Marne riverbank about 30 miles east of Paris, after unearthing the rare near complete skeleton of a mammoth, which has been christened “Helmut". The remains which include four connected vertebrae and a complete pelvis, dating back some 200,000-50,000 years ago, were discovered by accident during excavations at an Ancient Roman site.

— Archaeologists in France have unearthed a rather hairy fossil — a nearly complete skeleton of a mammoth.

The bones — thought to belong to a creature that roamed the earth between 200,000 and 50,000 years ago — were discovered by accident during the excavation of an ancient Roman site 30 miles east of Paris.

It may be only the third remains of a long-haired woolly mammoth discovered in France in the last 150 years. Such discoveries are more common in Siberia.

Archaeologists will try to establish the circumstances of the long tusked specimen's death: If it drowned in the River Marne or was hunted by Neanderthal Man.

It was a French scientist, Georges Cuvier, who first identified the woolly mammoth in 1796.

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