Multiple collections

The collections at the Institut de paléontologie humaine are distinguished by their diversity and their significance in quantity and role in the history of prehistory. They include some thousands of objects coming from two main sources : archaeological excavations carried out by researchers from the Institut de paléontologie and acquisitions, donations and exchanges.

Thus a large part of these collections comes from sites that are today considered as major prehistoric sites : for example, the la Madeleine rock shelter in Dordogne served as a reference for Henri Breuil to establish the Magdalenian typology and the sites of Téviec and Höedic in Britany were used for the Mesolithic period. The Institut de paléontologie humaine also houses the famous human remains from Qafzeh, a site in the Near East, considered among the oldest remains (ca. 100,000 years) of anatomically modern humans found in a burial environment ; closer to us on the timeline, the collection includes skeletons from Taforalt and Afalou Bou Rhummel in North Africa. Apart from a rich reference bone collection (animal and human), one also needs to mention the pieces from the Regalia collection and the original Sinanthropus cast series.

The collections at the Institut de paléontologie humaine attract numerous scientists and students every year. Our computerised Databases – listing the whole of the material - were built to efficiently respond to the expectations of the scientists and contribute towards the collection development programme.

Access to collections

Please, motivate your request, in writing, to the director of the Institut de paléontologie humaine