The strength and the nature of the covariance between tooth and body size was investigated in Homo, Gorilla, Pan, Papio and Colobus. When sexes are combined in each taxon, the correlations are strong enough to compare the allometry coefficients of taxa, and the non-human taxa show a sufficiently strong linear relationship to compute ‘interspecific’ allometry coefficients. Allometry coefficients for each variable were not uniform among the taxa, and coefficients also differed from one variable to another. Computed ‘intra’ and ‘inter’ specific allometry coefficients from these data suggest that canine size will usually scale at a higher level than molar crown area, which is at most isometric, and not positively allometric with respect to body size. The consequence is that larger representatives of a taxon would be expected to combine relatively larger canines with a proportional, or relatively smaller, molar crown area. It is pointed out that these differences do not correspond to those found between ‘gracile’ and ‘robust’ australopithecines.

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