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RE: Cuteness

On Wed, 15 May 2002, Allan Edels wrote:
> Jonathan:          
> There are a few “baby” ceratopsians.  
> There is a growth series of _Protoceratops_ from around 20” long to full
> grown (7-8 feet) on display at AMNH (NYC).  These included many
> specimens.  Also, I saw a small _Bagaceratops_ specimen once (probably
> mostly reconstructed).   I’m sure someone can name a few others.
> Note that both of these juveniles exhibit a “cuteness” – basically very
> large eyes in a large head, with a shorter snout (as compared to the
> adults).  A similar effect can be noticed in the evolution of Mickey
> Mouse’s facial features from the 1920’s until now.  :-)  There are other
> features which also show similar changes through growth, but I’m not
> going to list them now.
> (Interestingly, humans show this similar cuteness as compared to the
> other great apes).

Cuteness is in the eye of the beholder. Nevertheless, I think cuteness
in young goes beyond just indicating an immature stage of growth,
it illicits parental responses in adults. Not quite sure how to express
that. Young get cut slack for behavior that from an adult would earn
a sharp response. This implies that the young are in a setting with
adults, implying some sort of care.