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  #1  
Old 10 November 2008, 07:53 AM
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snopes snopes is offline
 
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Icon220 Women have more bones than men?

Comment: My daughter called me earlier today and asked me to look up the
human skeleton. She (and I) were positive the woman's body had more
bones... Is that not true? They were at a health museum and the man told
the class their are 206 bones in the human body. She asked the man if the
woman had two more. He said no. Are we both confusing Bible School with
medical fact?
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  #2  
Old 10 November 2008, 10:54 AM
Troberg Troberg is offline
 
 
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Didn't Sarah Conner say that the human body had 215 bones in one of the Terminator movies, and that that was one of them?

Seriously, though, if it was true that women has more ribs, why do archeologists and other professionals that need to determine sex of a skeleton use such complicated methods as angle of the pelvis, size of the pelvic opening, shape of facial features and so on, when a simple count of ribs would do?
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Old 10 November 2008, 12:54 PM
Mycroft Mycroft is offline
 
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I think it all comes from Genesis, where God took one on Adam's ribs to create Eve, thus leaving men with fewer ribs than women. As the first part of this is rubbish, so is the second.
Although there are skeletal differences between men and women (notably the pelvis), the number of bones in adults is the same (you actually have more bones when younger; 270 at birth, some to which fuse together with growth leaving a total of 206)
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Old 10 November 2008, 01:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mycroft View Post
Although there are skeletal differences between men and women (notably the pelvis), the number of bones in adults is the same (you actually have more bones when younger; 270 at birth, some to which fuse together with growth leaving a total of 206)
DD had her hand x-rayed after shutting it in a car door when she 7 or 8 and the bones in her fingers weren't fused yet. It looked really cool on the x-ray.
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Old 10 November 2008, 01:26 PM
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Wolf

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mycroft View Post
As the first part of this is rubbish, so is the second.
The second is rubbish whether or not the first part is. If I remove a rib, or any other body part from you, your offspring will not be missing that part. And should I close a person from that removed bit, that person is likely to have all the parts you do, except for gender differences.

So if I were to remove a rib from you and use it to clone a perosn of the opposite gender, s/he will have the same number of ribs that you started with as would all of your children.
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  #6  
Old 10 November 2008, 02:03 PM
candy from strangers candy from strangers is offline
 
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My 5th grade science teacher taught us this as fact. He even said that's how you can tell the sex of the person if only their bones are found. Of course, this is also the guy who taught us that hiccups are caused by "a nerve in your throat overheating"

Thanks Mr. Gale, for teaching me to second-guess authority figures at an early age!
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Old 10 November 2008, 02:13 PM
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Yes, they are mistaking Bible school with fact. As I explained to my daughter last year when her teacher passed on this bad information, it would be the same as if someone lost a finger in an accident-- the kids will still be born with all ten fingers.

Here is an interesting article someone on snopes passed on to me last year. It's about the genetics, the differences in now-discredited Lamarckian evolution and Darwinian evolution and also how one professor handles this common misperception without belittling those who believe it or even telling them this means the Biblical account must be wrong.

I've also heard the the Hebrew word that sometimes gets translated into "rib" really just means side but I'll have to leave that idea to someone who knows more about all that than I do.
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Old 10 November 2008, 03:29 PM
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Richard W Richard W is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DemonWolf View Post
The second is rubbish whether or not the first part is. If I remove a rib, or any other body part from you, your offspring will not be missing that part. And should I close a person from that removed bit, that person is likely to have all the parts you do, except for gender differences.
No, it's another sign that Darwin was wrong. Good Christians prefer Lamarck! Even though the basic premise of this argument is demonstrably and straightforwardly false!

(Not that Darwin necessarily actually disagreed with Lamarck on all matters, as he didn't know the mechanism of heredity; he just showed that Lamarckian inheritance wasn't necessary, or a full explanation.)
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Old 10 November 2008, 03:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by candy from strangers View Post
He even said that's how you can tell the sex of the person if only their bones are found.
While I might not be able to tell the difference, I imagine an expert on such things could, because as Mycroft said, there are pretty major differences between the pelvic bone structure of males and females (because of the whole females having to give birth thing).
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  #10  
Old 10 November 2008, 03:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jahungo View Post
While I might not be able to tell the difference, I imagine an expert on such things could, because as Mycroft said, there are pretty major differences between the pelvic bone structure of males and females (because of the whole females having to give birth thing).
One of the ways is the width of the pelvis compared to the shoulders. If the pelvis is wider, then it is a female skeleton. Otherwise, it is male.

Also, I believe such identification requires the person to have gone through puberty before death as such changes don't take place until then.
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Old 10 November 2008, 03:43 PM
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My dad and I have one extra rib as compared with the medically accepted complement. 207 bones - WOOT, in your face OP!
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  #12  
Old 10 November 2008, 03:56 PM
candy from strangers candy from strangers is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jahungo View Post
While I might not be able to tell the difference, I imagine an expert on such things could, because as Mycroft said, there are pretty major differences between the pelvic bone structure of males and females (because of the whole females having to give birth thing).
Oh I'm aware that sex can be identified from the pelvis, and learned how to do that myself in high school (Thanks to Mrs. Smith, who was an awesome anatomy teacher!), what I'm saying is that this guy told us that the way scientists and police officers identified sex was by counting the ribs. He was an idiot, a liar and a jerk.
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  #13  
Old 10 November 2008, 10:01 PM
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I posted before (in the thread about corsets and myths of women having ribs removed to have smaller waists) that in an X ray taken a couple of years ago (to diagnose gallstones) the doctor pointed out to my mother that she had a pair less ribs than normal people, rare he said, but not unheard of. It explained her tiny waist though!

Kirsty
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