Neanderthals were an extinct species that existed on Earth during human prehistory.


Physically very like humans, they had jutting brow ridges, large noses and stooped postures. However, while stereotyped as brutish by later humans, Nimrod showed intelligence and spoke articulately. (TV: Ghost Light)


The tribe which Nimrod originally belonged to herded mammoths during the summer for food. They considered the fang of the cave bear to be a sign of wisdom. The tribal elders "spoke with the voice of the Burning One", namely Light. The actions of the Seventh Doctor implied that at some time in the past, the Doctor had encountered the Neanderthal species some time before. (TV: Ghost Light)

Nimrod referred to Light as "The Burning One", implying that his tribe worshiped him. Alternatively, they may have originally worshiped another deity (or the Sun) as the Burning One and when Light appeared, transferred their worship to him.

According to the the Fourth Doctor, the Neanderthals could knock up a good Mammoth casserole. (PROSE: The Romance of Crime)



Neanderthals evolved in Eurasia around the same time as humans did in Africa, from the same ancestor species. The Neanderthals were mostly wiped out by the Humans, with the help of the Dæmons, who for unknown reasons favoured Humanity. (TV: The Dæmons) They were believed to be wiped out around 26,000 BC. (PROSE: Only Human)

The Eleventh Doctor arrived with Amy Pond in Birmingham during the Ice Age just in time to save a Neanderthal man from a sabre-toothed tiger. (COMIC: Snow Globe)

Some Neanderthal societies, such as Enkidu's, survived well past the palaeolithic Ice Ages. (PROSE: Timewyrm: Genesys)

Nimrod was preserved as the last specimen of his species as part of the Catalogue of Life by the alien survey team headed by Light. In 1883, Josiah Samuel Smith awoke him and employed him as his butler. (TV: Ghost Light)

A Neanderthal named Das was accidentally transported from 29,185 BC to Bromley in 2005. (PROSE: Only Human)

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.

Fandom may earn an affiliate commission on sales made from links on this page.

Stream the best stories.

Fandom may earn an affiliate commission on sales made from links on this page.

Get Disney+