So thinks Francis Thackeray at RealClearScience:
Dawson’s role in the Piltdown Man hoax appears to have been confirmed in 2016 by palaeo-anthropologist Dr Isabelle de Groote and her colleagues. High-tech forensic analyses led them to conclude that only a single hoaxer, presumably Dawson, was responsible. The case seems closed. But is it?
Yes, everyone is blaming Dawson now.
Research I have conducted recently and published in the South African Journal of Science suggests that Dawson may not necessarily have been the culprit in this particular case.
I suspect someone realised that Dawson was a fraudster and decided to play a joke on him. Archival research in London and Paris leads me to believe that a French Jesuit priest was in on the joke – which went terribly wrong after palaeontological experts mistook Piltdown Man for the real thing. More.
Thackeray wants to cast the blame on Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, a French Jesuit, long suspected in this matter by Louis Leakey and Stephen Jay Gould.
It gets more byzantine, the more we go into it. In such cases, the best solution is, believe nobody.
See also: Royal Society’s verdict on Piltdown hoaxer: Dawson
British mystery: Who was responsible for forging Piltdown man?October 1, 2016
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