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Encyclopedia > Human evolution
Reconstruction of a Neanderthal hunter, American Museum of Natural History.

Human evolution is the part of biological evolution concerning the emergence of humans as a distinct species from other primates. It is the subject of a broad scientific inquiry that seeks to understand and describe how this change and development occurred. The study of human evolution encompasses many scientific disciplines, most notably physical anthropology, linguistics and genetics. The term "human", in the context of human evolution, refers to the genus Homo, but studies of human evolution usually include other hominins, such as the australopithecines. For the history of Earth which includes the time before human existence, see History of Earth. ... For discussions of primitive humans, see Human evolution. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1640x2212, 438 KB)--204. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1640x2212, 438 KB)--204. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... This article is about evolution in biology. ... Human beings are defined variously in biological, spiritual, and cultural terms, or in combinations thereof. ... For other uses, see Species (disambiguation). ... For the ecclesiastical use of this term, see primate (religion) Families 13, See classification A primate is any member of the biological order Primates, the group that contains all lemurs, monkeys, and apes, including humans. ... A magnet levitating above a high-temperature superconductor demonstrates the Meissner effect. ... Physical anthropology, often called biological anthropology, studies the mechanisms of biological evolution, genetic inheritance, human adaptability and variation, primatology, primate morphology, and the fossil record of human evolution. ... For the journal, see Linguistics (journal). ... This article is about the general scientific term. ... Species Homo sapiens See text for extinct species. ... Genera Gorilla Pan (chimpanzees) Homo (humans) Paranthropus (extinct) Australopithecus (extinct) Sahelanthropus (extinct) Ardipithecus (extinct) Kenyanthropus (extinct) Homininae is a subfamily of Hominidae, including Homo sapiens and some extinct relatives, as well as the gorillas and the chimpanzees. ... Species A. afarensis (Lucy) Formerly Australopithecus, now Paranthropus Australopithecines (genus Australopithecus) are a group of extinct Hominids that are closely related to humans. ...

Contents

History of paleoanthropology

Paleoanthropology is the study of ancient humans based on fossil evidence, tools, and other signs of human habitation. The modern field of paleoanthropology began in the 19th century with the discovery of "Neanderthal man". The eponymous skeleton was found in 1856, but there had been finds elsewhere since 1830. Paleoanthropology, which combines the disciplines of paleontology and physical anthropology, is the study of ancient humans as found in fossil hominid evidence such as petrifacted bones and footprints. ... Alternative meaning: Nineteenth Century (periodical) (18th century — 19th century — 20th century — more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 19th century was that century which lasted from 1801-1900 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see Neanderthal (disambiguation). ...


By 1859, the morphological similarity of humans to certain great apes had been discussed and argued for some time, but the idea of the biological evolution of species in general was not legitimized until Charles Darwin published On the Origin of Species in November of that year. Darwin's first book on evolution did not address the specific question of human evolution: "Light will be thrown on the origin of man and his history," was all Darwin wrote on the subject. Nevertheless, the implications of evolutionary theory were clear to contemporary readers.[1] Year 1859 (MDCCCLIX) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Thursday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ... The term morphology in biology refers to the outward appearance (shape, structure, colour, pattern) of an organism or taxon and its component parts. ... Genera Subfamily Ponginae Pongo - Orangutans Gigantopithecus (extinct) Sivapithecus (extinct) Subfamily Homininae Gorilla - Gorillas Pan - Chimpanzees Homo - Humans Paranthropus (extinct) Australopithecus (extinct) Sahelanthropus (extinct) Ardipithecus (extinct) Kenyanthropus (extinct) Pierolapithecus (extinct) (tentative) The Hominids (Hominidae) are a biological family which includes humans, extinct species of humanlike creatures and the other great apes... For other people of the same surname, and places and things named after Charles Darwin, see Darwin. ... The 1859 edition of On the Origin of Species First published in 1859, The Origin of Species (full title On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life) by British naturalist Charles Darwin is one of the pivotal...


Debates between Thomas Huxley and Richard Owen focused on human evolution. Huxley convincingly illustrated many of the similarities and differences between humans and apes in his 1863 book Evidence as to Man's Place in Nature. By the time Darwin published his own book on the subject, The Descent of Man, it was already a well-known interpretation of his theory, and the interpretation which made the theory highly controversial. Even many of Darwin's original supporters (such as Alfred Russel Wallace and Charles Lyell) balked at the idea that human beings could have evolved their impressive mental capacities and moral sensibilities through natural selection. Thomas Henry Huxley, FRS (4 May 1825 – 29 June 1895) [1] was an English biologist, known as Darwins Bulldog for his advocacy of Charles Darwins theory of evolution. ... Sir Richard Owen KCB (July 20, 1804–December 18, 1892) was an English biologist, comparative anatomist and palaeontologist. ... Evidence as to Mans Place in Nature is an 1863 book by Thomas Henry Huxley and the first to discuss human evolution, coming five years after Charles Darwin announced his general theory, and four years after the publication of Darwins Origin. ... Title page of the first edition of Charles Darwins The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex. ... For the Cornish painter, see Alfred Wallis. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... For other uses, see Natural selection (disambiguation). ...


Since the time of Carolus Linnaeus, scientists have considered the great apes to be the closest relatives of human beings, based on morphological similarity. In the 19th century, they speculated that the closest living relatives of humans are chimpanzees and gorillas. Based on the natural range of these creatures, they surmised that humans share a common ancestor with other African apes and that fossils of these ancestors would ultimately be found in Africa. Carl Linnaeus, Latinized as Carolus Linnaeus, also known after his ennoblement as  , (May 13, 1707[1] – January 10, 1778), was a Swedish botanist, physician and zoologist[2] who laid the foundations for the modern scheme of nomenclature. ... Type species Simia troglodytes Blumenbach, 1775 distribution of Species Pan troglodytes Pan paniscus Chimpanzee, often shortened to chimp, is the common name for the two extant species of apes in the genus Pan. ... Type species Troglodytes gorilla Savage, 1847 distribution of Gorilla Species Gorilla gorilla Gorilla beringei The gorilla, the largest of the living primates, is a ground-dwelling omnivore that inhabits the forests of Africa. ... Missing link is a term for a transitional form from the fossil record that connects an earlier species to a later one, or which connects two different species to an earlier ancestor. ... A world map showing the continent of Africa Africa is the worlds second-largest and second most-populous continent, after Asia. ... For other uses, see Fossil (disambiguation). ...


It was not until the 1920s that hominid fossils were discovered in Africa. In 1924, Raymond Dart described Australopithecus africanus.[2] The type specimen was the Taung Child, an australopithecine infant discovered in a cave deposit being mined for concrete at Taung, South Africa. The remains were a remarkably well-preserved tiny skull and an endocranial cast of the individual's brain. Although the brain was small (410 cm³), its shape was rounded, unlike that of chimpanzees and gorillas, and more like a modern human brain. Also, the specimen exhibited short canine teeth, and the position of the foramen magnum was evidence of bipedal locomotion. All of these traits convinced Dart that the Taung baby was a bipedal human ancestor, a transitional form between apes and humans. The 1920s is sometimes referred to as the Jazz Age or the Roaring Twenties, usually applied to America. ... A world map showing the continent of Africa Africa is the worlds second-largest and second most-populous continent, after Asia. ... For the rap album, see 1924 (album). ... Raymond Dart, holding the Taung Child skull Raymond Dart (February 4, 1893–22 November 1988) was an Australian anatomist and anthropologist best known for his discovery in 1924 of a fossil of Australopithecus at Taung in Northwestern South Africa. ... Binomial name Dart, 1925 Australopithecus africanus was an early hominid, an australopithecine, who lived between 2-3 million years ago in the Pliocene. ... Type specimens When a new species is discovered, more important than creating a new and unique name for the species is developing a reasonably detailed description. ... Taung Child refers to the fossil of a skull specimen of Australopithecus africanus. ... For the song by Modest Mouse, see Sad Sappy Sucker. ... Taung is a small town situated in North West Province of South Africa. ... An endocast or endocranial cast is a cast made of the mold formed by the impression the brain makes on the inside of the neurocranium (braincase), providing a replica of the brain with most of the details of its outer surface. ... In mammalian oral anatomy, the canine teeth, also called cuspids, dogteeth, fangs, or (in the case of those of the upper jaw) eye teeth, are relatively long, pointed teeth. ... In anatomy, in the occipital bone, the foramen magnum (Latin: great hole) is one of the several oval or circular apertures in the base of the skull (the foramina), through which the medulla oblongata (an extension of the spinal cord) enters and exits the skull vault. ... A biped is an animal that travels across surfaces supported by two legs. ...


Another 20 years would pass before Dart's claims were taken seriously, following the discovery of more fossils that resembled his find. The prevailing view of the time was that a large brain evolved before bipedality. It was thought that intelligence on par with modern humans was a prerequisite to bipedalism.


The australopithecines are now thought to be immediate ancestors of the genus Homo, the group to which modern humans belong.[3] Both australopithecines and Homo sapiens are part of the tribe Hominini, but recent data has brought into doubt the position of A. africanus as a direct ancestor of modern humans; it may well have been a dead-end cousin.[4] The australopithecines were originally classified as either gracile or robust. The robust variety of Australopithecus has since been reclassified as Paranthropus, although it is still regarded as a subgenus of Australopithecus by some authors.[5] Genera Subtribe Panina Pan (chimpanzees) Subtribe Hominina Homo (humans) †Paranthropus †Australopithecus †Sahelanthropus †Orrorin †Ardipithecus †Kenyanthropus For an explanation of very similar terms see Hominid Hominini is the tribe of Homininae that only includes humans (Homo), chimpanzees (Pan), and their extinct ancestors. ... This page is a candidate to be copied to Wiktionary using the Transwiki process. ... Robust means healthy, strong, durable, and often adaptable, innovative, flexible. ... Species †Paranthropus aethiopicus †Paranthropus boisei †Paranthropus robustus The robust australopithecines, members of the extinct hominin genus Paranthropus (Greek para beside, Greek anthropos human), were bipedal hominins that probably descended from the gracile australopithecine hominins (Australopithecus). ...


In the 1930s, when the robust specimens were first described, the Paranthropus genus was used. During the 1960s, the robust variety was moved into Australopithecus. The recent trend has been back to the original classification as a separate genus. The 1930s (years from 1930–1939) were described as an abrupt shift to more radical and conservative lifestyles, as countries were struggling to find a solution to the Great Depression, also known as the World Depression. ... The 1960s decade refers to the years from 1960 to 1969. ...

Hominin species distributed through time edit

Genera Subtribe Panina Pan (chimpanzees) Subtribe Hominina Homo (humans) †Paranthropus †Australopithecus †Sahelanthropus †Orrorin †Ardipithecus †Kenyanthropus For an explanation of very similar terms see Hominid Hominini is the tribe of Homininae that only includes humans (Homo), chimpanzees (Pan), and their extinct ancestors. ...

Note: 1e +06 years = 1 million years = 1 Ma.


Before Homo

The evolutionary history of the primates can be traced back for some 85 million years, as one of the oldest of all surviving placental mammal groups. Most paleontologists consider that primates share a common ancestor with the bats, another extremely ancient lineage, and that this ancestor probably lived during the late Cretaceous, together with the last dinosaurs. The oldest known primates come from North America, but they were widespread in Eurasia and Africa as well, during the tropical conditions of the Paleocene and Eocene. Families 15, See classification A primate is any member of the biological order Primates, the group that contains all the species commonly related to the lemurs, monkeys, and apes, with the latter category including humans. ... “Chiroptera” redirects here. ... // The Cretaceous Period is one of the major divisions of the geologic timescale, reaching from the end of the Jurassic Period (i. ... Orders Saurischia    Sauropodomorpha    Theropoda Ornithischia Dinosaurs are giant reptiles that dominated the terrestrial ecosystem for most of their 165-million year existence. ... The Paleocene, early dawn of the recent, is a geologic epoch that lasted from 65. ... hfajhfiudshfas == == == --24. ...


With the beginning of modern climates, marked by the formation of the first Antarctic ice in the early Oligocene around 40 million years ago, primates went extinct everywhere but Africa and southern Asia. Fossil evidence found in Germany 20 years ago was determined to be about 16.5 million years old, some 1.5 million years older than similar species from East Africa.[6] It suggests that the great ape and human lineage first appeared in Eurasia and not Africa. The Oligocene epoch is a geologic period of time that extends from about 34 million to 23 million years before the present. ...


The discoveries suggest that the early ancestors of the hominids (the family of great apes and humans) migrated to Eurasia from Africa about 17 million years ago, just before these two continents were cut off from each other by an expansion of the Mediterranean Sea. Begun says that the great apes flourished in Eurasia and that their lineage leading to the African apes and humans—Dryopithecus—migrated south from Europe or Western Asia into Africa. The surviving tropical population, which is seen most completely in the upper Eocene and lowermost Oligocene fossil beds of the Fayum depression southwest of Cairo, gave rise to all living primates—lemurs of Madagascar, lorises of Southeast Asia, galagos or "bush babies" of Africa, and the anthropoids; platyrrhines or New World monkeys, and catarrhines or Old World monkeys and the great apes and humans. Species †Dryopithecus wuduensis †Dryopithecus fontani †Dryopithecus brancoi †Dryopithecus laietanus †Dryopithecus crusafonti Dryopithecus was a genus of apes that is known from localities ranging from Eastern Africa into Eurasia. ... Al Fayyum is one of the governorates of Egypt located in the centre of the country. ... Superfamilies and Families Cheirogaleoidea Cheirogaleidae Lemuroidea Lemuridae Lepilemuridae Indriidae Lemurs make up the infraorder Lemuriformes and are members of a class of primates known as prosimians. ... Genera Loris Nycticebus For other uses, see Loris (disambiguation). ... Genera  Otolemur  Euoticus  Galago For the desktop presence framework, see Galago (software). ... Anthropoid coffin from the late Bronze age (14th-13th Centuries BCE) discovered in the Sinai Peninsula at Dier-el-Balach. ... Families Cebidae Aotidae Pitheciidae Atelidae The New World monkeys are the four families of primates that are found in Central and South America: the Cebidae, Aotidae, Pitheciidae and Atelidae. ... Families Cercopithecidae Hylobatidae Hominidae Catarrhini is the unranked group of the Primates, one of the three major divisions of the suborder Haplorrhini. ...


The earliest known catarrhine is Kamoyapithecus from uppermost Oligocene at Eragaleit in the northern Kenya rift valley, dated to 24 Ma (millions of years before present). Its ancestry is generally thought to be close to such genera as Aegyptopithecus, Propliopithecus, and Parapithecus from the Fayum, at around 35 mya. There are no fossils from the intervening 11 million years. No near ancestor to South American platyrrhines, whose fossil record begins at around 30 mya, can be identified among the North African fossil species, and possibly lies in other forms that lived in West Africa that were caught up in the still-mysterious transatlantic sweepstakes that sent primates, rodents, boa constrictors, and cichlid fishes from Africa to South America sometime in the Oligocene. Annum is a Latin noun meaning year. ... Binomial name Aegyptopithecus, also called the Dawn Ape, is an early fossil catarrhine that predates the divergence between hominoids (apes) and Old World monkeys. ... Propliopithecus is an extinct genus of ape. ... For other uses of mya, see mya (disambiguation). ...


In the early Miocene, after 22 mya, many kinds of arboreally adapted primitive catarrhines from East Africa suggest a long history of prior diversification. Because the fossils at 20 mya include fragments attributed to Victoriapithecus, the earliest cercopithecoid, the other forms are (by default) grouped as hominoids, without clear evidence as to which are closest to living apes and humans. Among the presently recognized genera in this group, which ranges up to 13 mya, we find Proconsul, Rangwapithecus, Dendropithecus, Limnopithecus, Nacholapithecus, Equatorius, Nyanzapithecus, Afropithecus, Heliopithecus, and Kenyapithecus, all from East Africa. The presence of other generalized non-cercopithecids of middle Miocene age from sites far distant—Otavipithecus from cave deposits in Namibia, and Pierolapithecus and Dryopithecus from France, Spain and Austria—is evidence of a wide diversity of forms across Africa and the Mediterranean basin during the relatively warm and equable climatic regimes of the early and middle Miocene. The Miocene Epoch is a period of time that extends from about 23. ... Binomial name    Victoriapithecus macinnesi    von Koenigswald, 1969 Victoriapithecus macinnesi is an extinct species described from the oldest known monkey skull. ... Species (extinct) Proconsul africanus Proconsul nyanzae Proconsul major Proconsul heseloni Proconsul was an early genus of primates that existed from 27 to 17 million years ago during the Miocene epoch, first in Kenya, and restricted to Africa. ... Binomial name Afropithecus turkanensis Afropithecus was a primate that lived in Africa and Saudi Arabia during the early to middle Miocene. ... Binomial name †Kenyapithecus wickeri Leakey, 1962 Kenyapithecus wickeri was a fossil ape discovered by Louis Leakey in 1961 at a site called Fort Ternan in Kenya. ... Pierolapithecus catalaunicus is the name of a species of primate which until recently, was only hypothesized. ... Species †Dryopithecus wuduensis †Dryopithecus fontani †Dryopithecus brancoi †Dryopithecus laietanus †Dryopithecus crusafonti Dryopithecus was a genus of apes that is known from localities ranging from Eastern Africa into Eurasia. ...


The youngest of the Miocene hominoids, Oreopithecus, is from 9 mya coal beds in Italy. Oreopithecus bambolii, or swamp ape, is a hominoid, or hominid (there is some controversy among the informed), species whose fossils have been found in Italy (Tuscany and Sardinia) and in East Africa. ...


Molecular evidence indicates that the lineage of gibbons (family Hylobatidae) became distinct between 18 and 12 Ma, and that of orangutans (subfamily Ponginae) at about 12 Ma; we have no fossils that clearly document the ancestry of gibbons, which may have originated in a so far unknown South East Asian hominid population, but fossil proto-orangutans may be represented by Ramapithecus from India and Griphopithecus from Turkey, dated to around 10 Ma. Genera Hylobates Hoolock Nomascus Symphalangus Gibbons are the small apes that are grouped in the family Hylobatidae. ... Species 14 species, see text Gibbons are small apes that are traditionally grouped in the genus Hylobates. ... This article is about the primate. ... Binomial name Sivapithecus ramapithecus Ramapithecus is an extinct primate erected from a two inch piece of a jawbone, with four teeth. ...


It has been suggested that species close to last common ancestors of gorillas, chimpanzees and humans may be represented by Nakalipithecus fossils found in Kenya and Ouranopithecus found in Greece. Molecular evidence suggests that between 8 and 4 mya, first the gorillas, and then the chimpanzee (genus Pan) split off from the line leading to the humans; human DNA is 98.4 percent identical to the DNA of chimpanzees. We have no fossil record, however, of either group of African great apes, possibly because bones do not fossilize in rain forest environments. Binomial name Nakalipithecus nakayamai is a prehistoric great ape species that lived in todays Kenya region early in the Late Miocene, 10 million years ago (mya). ... Binomial name Bonis & Melentis, 1977 Ouranopithecus macedoniensis, sometimes called Graecopithecus macedoniensis, is a prehistoric hominid species found in Greece and dated to the late Miocene. ... Type species Troglodytes gorilla Savage, 1847 distribution of Gorilla Species Gorilla gorilla Gorilla beringei The gorilla, the largest of the living primates, is a ground-dwelling omnivore that inhabits the forests of Africa. ... Type species Simia troglodytes Blumenbach, 1775 distribution of Species Pan troglodytes Pan paniscus Chimpanzee, often shortened to chimp, is the common name for the two extant species of apes in the genus Pan. ... A rainforest is a forested biome with high annual rainfall. ...


Hominines, however, seem to have been one of the mammal groups (as well as antelopes, hyenas, dogs, pigs, elephants, and horses) that adapted to the open grasslands as soon as this biome appeared, due to increasingly seasonal climates, about 8 mya, and their fossils are relatively well known. The earliest are Sahelanthropus tchadensis (7–6 mya) and Orrorin tugenensis (6 mya), followed by: Binomial name Sahelanthropus tchadensis Sahelanthropus tchadensis is an early fossil hominid, approximately 7 million years old from the Miocene. ... Binomial name †Orrorin tugenensis Senut et al, 2001 Orrorin tugenensis is considered as the second oldest possible hominin ancestor related to modern humans (other than Sahelanthropus tchadensis) and is the only species classified in genus Orrorin. ...

Species †Ardipithecus kadabba †Ardipithecus ramidus Ardipithecus is a very early hominin genus (subfamily Homininae). ... For the song by Modest Mouse, see Sad Sappy Sucker. ... Binomial name †Australopithecus anamensis Leakey et al, 1995 Australopithecus anamensis is a fossil species of Australopithecus. ... Binomial name Johanson & White, 1978 Australopithecus afarensis is an extinct hominid which lived between 3. ... Binomial name Dart, 1925 Australopithecus africanus was an early hominid, an australopithecine, who lived between 2-3 million years ago in the Pliocene. ... Binomial name Australopithecus bahrelghazali Brunet et al. ... Binomial name †Australopithecus garhi Asfaw et al, 1997 Australopithecus garhi is a gracile australopithecine species whose fossils were discovered in 1996 by a research team led by Ethiopian paleontologist Berhane Asfaw and including Tim White, an American paleontologist researcher. ... Kenyanthropus is a possible hominid genus acording to some paleoanthropologists. ... Binomial name †Kenyanthropus platyops Leakey et al. ... Species †Paranthropus aethiopicus †Paranthropus boisei †Paranthropus robustus The robust australopithecines, members of the extinct hominin genus Paranthropus (Greek para beside, Greek anthropos human), were bipedal hominins that probably descended from the gracile australopithecine hominins (Australopithecus). ... Binomial name †Paranthropus aethiopicus (Olson, 1985) Paranthropus aethiopicus is an extinct species of Paranthropus. ... Binomial name †Paranthropus boisei (Mary Leakey, 1959) Paranthropus boisei (originally called Zinjanthropus boisei and then Australopithecus boisei until recently) was an early hominid and described as the largest of the Paranthropus species. ... Binomial name Paranthropus robustus Broom, 1938 Paranthropus robustus was originally discovered in Southern Africa in 1938. ... Species Homo sapiens See text for extinct species. ... Binomial name Leakey et al, 1964 Homo habilis (pronounced ) (handy man, skillful person) is a species of the genus Homo, which lived from approximately 2. ... Binomial name †Homo rudolfensis Alexeev, 1986 Homo rudolfensis is a fossil hominin species proposed in 1986 by V. P. Alexeev for the specimen Skull 1470 (KNM ER 1470)[1]. Originally thought to be a member of the species Homo habilis, the fossil was the center of much debate concerning its... Binomial name †Homo ergaster Groves & Mazak, 1975 Homo ergaster (working man) is an extinct hominid species (or subspecies, according to some authorities) which lived throughout eastern and southern Africa between 1. ... Binomial name †Homo antecessor Bermudez de Castro et al. ... Binomial name †Homo cepranensis Mallegni et al, 2003 Homo cepranensis is a proposed name for a hominin species discovered in 1994 known from only one skull cap. ... Binomial name (Dubois, 1892) Synonyms † Pithecanthropus erectus † Sinanthropus pekinensis † Javanthropus soloensis † Meganthropus paleojavanicus Homo erectus (Latin: upright man) is an extinct species of the genus Homo. ... Binomial name †Homo heidelbergensis Schoetensack, 1908 Homo heidelbergensis (Heidelberg Man) is an extinct species of the genus Homo and the direct ancestor of Homo neanderthalensis in Europe. ... Homo rhodesiensis (AKA Rhodesian Man, or Broken Hill Skull) is a homo species resembling Homo neandertalis, but whose remains were found in Africa. ... Binomial name Homo neanderthalensis King, 1864 The Neanderthal or Neandertal was a species of genus Homo (Homo neanderthalensis) that inhabited Europe and parts of western Asia from about 230,000 to 29,000 years ago (in the Middle Palaeolithic, early Stone Age). ... Trinomial name †Homo sapiens idaltu White et al, 2003 Homo sapiens idaltu (roughly translated as elderly wise man) is an extinct subspecies of Homo sapiens that lived almost 160,000 years ago in Pleistocene Africa. ... The term Archaic Homo sapiens refers generally to the earliest members of the species Homo sapiens, which consisted of the Neanderthals of Europe and the Middle East, the Neanderthal-like hominids of Africa and Asia, and the immediate ancestors of all these hominids. ... Binomial name P. Brown , 2004 Homo floresiensis (Man of Flores, nicknamed Hobbit) is the name for a possible species in the genus Homo, remarkable for its small body, small brain, and survival until relatively recent times. ...

The genus Homo

The word homo is Latin for "human", chosen originally by Carolus Linnaeus in his classification system. It is often translated as "man", although this can lead to confusion, given that the English word "man" can be generic like homo, but can also specifically refer to males. Latin for "man" in the gender-specific sense is vir, cognate with "virile" and "werewolf". The word "human" is from humanus, the adjectival form of homo. For other uses, see Latin (disambiguation). ... Carl Linnaeus, Latinized as Carolus Linnaeus, also known after his ennoblement as  , (May 13, 1707[1] – January 10, 1778), was a Swedish botanist, physician and zoologist[2] who laid the foundations for the modern scheme of nomenclature. ... Look up cognate in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


In modern taxonomy, Homo sapiens is the only extant species of its genus, Homo. Likewise, the ongoing study of the origins of Homo sapiens often demonstrates that there were other Homo species, all of which are now extinct. While some of these other species might have been ancestors of H. sapiens, many were likely our "cousins", having speciated away from our ancestral line.[7] There is not yet a consensus as to which of these groups should count as separate species and which as subspecies of another species. In some cases this is due to the paucity of fossils, in other cases it is due to the slight differences used to classify species in the Homo genus. The Sahara pump theory provides an explanation of the early variation in the genus Homo. For other uses, see Species (disambiguation). ... Species Homo sapiens See text for extinct species. ... The Sahara Pump Theory is one which is used to explain the various phases by which African flora and African fauna have left that continent to penetrate the Middle East and possibly, thereafter, the rest of the world. ...


Homo habilis

H. habilis lived from about 2.4 to 1.4 million years ago (mya). H. habilis, the first species of the genus Homo, evolved in South and East Africa in the late Pliocene or early Pleistocene, 2.5–2 mya, when it diverged from the Australopithecines. H. habilis had smaller molars and larger brains than the Australopithecines, and made tools from stone and perhaps animal bones. One of the first known hominids, it was nicknamed 'handy man' by its discoverer, Louis Leakey. Some scientists have proposed moving this species out of Homo and into Australopithecus. Binomial name Leakey et al, 1964 Homo habilis (pronounced ) (handy man, skillful person) is a species of the genus Homo, which lived from approximately 2. ... The Pliocene epoch (spelled Pleiocene in some older texts) is the period in the geologic timescale that extends from 5. ... The Pleistocene epoch (IPA: ) on the geologic timescale is the period from 1,808,000 to 11,550 years BP. The Pleistocene epoch had been intended to cover the worlds recent period of repeated glaciations. ... A molar is the fourth kind of tooth in mammals. ... The human brain In animals, the brain (enkephalos) (Greek for in the skull), is the control center of the central nervous system, responsible for behavior. ... A modern hammer is directly descended from ancient hand tools A tool or device is a piece of equipment which typically provides a mechanical advantage in accomplishing a physical task, or provides an ability that is not naturally available to the user of a tool. ... Rock redirects here. ... This article is about the skeletal organs. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... For the song by Modest Mouse, see Sad Sappy Sucker. ...


Homo rudolfensis and Homo georgicus

These are proposed species names for fossils from about 1.9–1.6 Ma, the relation of which with H. habilis is not yet clear. For other uses of mya, see mya (disambiguation). ...

  • H. rudolfensis refers to a single, incomplete skull from Kenya.[8]
  • H. georgicus, from Georgia, may be an intermediate form between H. habilis and H. erectus,[9] or a sub-species of H. erectus.[10]

Binomial name †Homo rudolfensis Alexeev, 1986 Homo rudolfensis is a fossil hominin species proposed in 1986 by V. P. Alexeev for the specimen Skull 1470 (KNM ER 1470)[1]. Originally thought to be a member of the species Homo habilis, the fossil was the center of much debate concerning its... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ...

Homo ergaster and Homo erectus

One current view of the temporal and geographical distribution of hominid populations. Other interpretations differ mainly in the taxonomy and geographical distribution of hominid species.
One current view of the temporal and geographical distribution of hominid populations. Other interpretations differ mainly in the taxonomy and geographical distribution of hominid species.

The first fossils of Homo erectus were discovered by Dutch physician Eugene Dubois in 1891 on the Indonesian island of Java. He originally gave the material the name Pithecanthropus erectus based on its morphology that he considered to be intermediate between that of humans and apes.[11] H. erectus lived from about 1.8 mya to 70,000 years ago. Often the early phase, from 1.8 to 1.25 mya, is considered to be a separate species, H. ergaster, or it is seen as a subspecies of erectus, Homo erectus ergaster. Image File history File links Size of this preview: 535 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (1833 × 2052 pixel, file size: 868 KB, MIME type: image/png) File historyClick on a date/time to view the file as it appeared at that time. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 535 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (1833 × 2052 pixel, file size: 868 KB, MIME type: image/png) File historyClick on a date/time to view the file as it appeared at that time. ... Eugene Dubois (January 28, 1858 - December 16, 1940) was a Dutch anthropologist, who earned world-wide fame with the discovery of Homo erectus in Java in 1891. ... Binomial name (Dubois, 1892) Synonyms † Pithecanthropus erectus † Sinanthropus pekinensis † Javanthropus soloensis † Meganthropus paleojavanicus Homo erectus (Latin: upright man) is an extinct species of the genus Homo. ... Binomial name †Homo ergaster Groves & Mazak, 1975 Homo ergaster (working man) is an extinct hominid species (or subspecies, according to some authorities) which lived throughout eastern and southern Africa between 1. ... Binomial name (Dubois, 1892) Synonyms † Pithecanthropus erectus † Sinanthropus pekinensis † Javanthropus soloensis † Meganthropus paleojavanicus Homo erectus (Latin: upright man) is an extinct species of the genus Homo. ...


In the Early Pleistocene, 1.5–1 mya, in Africa, Asia, and Europe, presumably, Homo habilis evolved larger brains and made more elaborate stone tools; these differences and others are sufficient for anthropologists to classify them as a new species, H. erectus. In addition H. erectus was the first human ancestor to walk truly upright.[12] This was made possible by the evolution of locking knees and a different location of the foramen magnum (the hole in the skull where the spine enters). They may have used fire to cook their meat. For other uses, see Asia (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Europe (disambiguation). ... Binomial name Leakey et al, 1964 Homo habilis (pronounced ) (handy man, skillful person) is a species of the genus Homo, which lived from approximately 2. ... Binomial name (Dubois, 1892) Synonyms † Pithecanthropus erectus † Sinanthropus pekinensis † Javanthropus soloensis † Meganthropus paleojavanicus Homo erectus (Latin: upright man) is an extinct species of the genus Homo. ... In anatomy, in the occipital bone, the foramen magnum (Latin: great hole) is one of the several oval or circular apertures in the base of the skull (the foramina), through which the medulla oblongata (an extension of the spinal cord) enters and exits the skull vault. ... For other uses, see Fire (disambiguation). ... Cooking is the act of preparing food. ... This article is about the food. ...

See also: Control of fire by early humans

A famous example of Homo erectus is Peking Man; others were found in Asia (notably in Indonesia), Africa, and Europe. Many paleoanthropologists are now using the term Homo ergaster for the non-Asian forms of this group, and reserving H. erectus only for those fossils found in the Asian region and meeting certain skeletal and dental requirements which differ slightly from ergaster. A reconstruction of Homo erectus. ... Trinomial name Homo erectus pekinensis (Black, 1927) Peking Man (sometimes now called Beijing Man), also called Sinanthropus pekinensis (currently Homo erectus pekinensis), is an example of Homo erectus. ...


Homo cepranensis and Homo antecessor

These are proposed as species that may be intermediate between H. erectus and H. heidelbergensis.[citation needed]

  • H. cepranensis refers to a single skull cap from Italy, estimated to be about 800,000 years old.[13]
  • H. antecessor is known from fossils from Spain and England that are 800,000–500,000 years old.[14]

Binomial name †Homo cepranensis Mallegni et al, 2003 Homo cepranensis is a proposed name for a hominin species discovered in 1994 known from only one skull cap. ... Binomial name †Homo antecessor Bermudez de Castro et al. ...

Homo heidelbergensis

H. heidelbergensis (Heidelberg Man) lived from about 800,000 to about 300,000 years ago. Also proposed as Homo sapiens heidelbergensis or Homo sapiens paleohungaricus.[15] Binomial name †Homo heidelbergensis Schoetensack, 1908 Homo heidelbergensis (Heidelberg Man) is an extinct species of the genus Homo and the direct ancestor of Homo neanderthalensis in Europe. ... For other uses, see Heidelberg (disambiguation). ...


Homo neanderthalensis

H. neanderthalensis lived from about 250,000 to as recent as 30,000 years ago. Also proposed as Homo sapiens neanderthalensis: there is ongoing debate over whether the 'Neanderthal Man' was a separate species, Homo neanderthalensis, or a subspecies of H. sapiens.[16] While the debate remains unsettled, evidence from mitochondrial DNA and Y-chromosomal DNA sequencing indicates that little or no gene flow occurred between H. neanderthalensis and H. sapiens, and, therefore, the two were separate species.[17] In 1997, Dr. Mark Stoneking, then an associate professor of anthropology at Pennsylvania State University, stated: "These results [based on mitochondrial DNA extracted from Neanderthal bone] indicate that Neanderthals did not contribute mitochondrial DNA to modern humans… Neanderthals are not our ancestors." Subsequent investigation of a second source of Neanderthal DNA supported these findings.[18] However, supporters of the multiregional hypothesis point to recent studies indicating non-African nuclear DNA heritage dating to one mya,[19] although the reliability of these studies have been questioned.[20] Binomial name Homo neanderthalensis King, 1864 The Neanderthal or Neandertal was a species of genus Homo (Homo neanderthalensis) that inhabited Europe and parts of western Asia from about 230,000 to 29,000 years ago (in the Middle Palaeolithic, early Stone Age). ... Binomial name Homo neanderthalensis King, 1864 The Neanderthal or Neandertal was a species of genus Homo (Homo neanderthalensis) that inhabited Europe and parts of western Asia from about 230,000 to 29,000 years ago (in the Middle Palaeolithic, early Stone Age). ... Mitochondrial DNA (some captions in German) Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) is the DNA located in organelles called mitochondria. ... The human Y chromosome is one of two sex chromosomes, it contains the genes that cause testis development, thus determining maleness. ... The structure of part of a DNA double helix Deoxyribonucleic acid, or DNA, is a nucleic acid molecule that contains the genetic instructions used in the development and functioning of all known living organisms. ... For the band, see 1997 (band). ... This article is about the state-related university. ... In cell biology, a mitochondrion is an organelle found in the cells of most eukaryotes. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ...


Homo rhodesiensis, and the Gawis cranium

  • H. rhodesiensis, estimated to be 300,000–125,000 years old, most current experts believe Rhodesian Man to be within the group of Homo heidelbergensis though other designations such as Archaic Homo sapiens and Homo sapiens rhodesiensis have also been proposed.
  • In February 2006 a fossil, the Gawis cranium, was found which might possibly be a species intermediate between H. erectus and H. sapiens or one of many evolutionary dead ends. The skull from Gawis, Ethiopia, is believed to be 500,000–250,000 years old. Only summary details are known, and no peer reviewed studies have been released by the finding team. Gawis man's facial features suggest its being either an intermediate species and an example of a "Bodo man" female.[21]

Homo rhodesiensis (AKA Rhodesian Man, or Broken Hill Skull) is a homo species resembling Homo neandertalis, but whose remains were found in Africa. ... Binomial name †Homo heidelbergensis Schoetensack, 1908 Homo heidelbergensis (Heidelberg Man) is an extinct species of the genus Homo and the direct ancestor of Homo neanderthalensis in Europe. ... The term Archaic Homo sapiens refers generally to the earliest members of the species Homo sapiens, which consisted of the Neanderthals of Europe and the Middle East, the Neanderthal-like hominids of Africa and Asia, and the immediate ancestors of all these hominids. ... Rhodesian Man (Homo rhodesiensis) is a cranium fossil that was found in an iron and zinc mine in Northern Rhodesia (now Kabwe, Zambia) in 1921 by Tom Zwiglaar, a Swiss miner. ... Asahmed Humet holding the Gawis cranium, shortly after he discovered it. ...

Homo sapiens

H. sapiens ("sapiens" means wise or intelligent) has lived from about 250,000 years ago to the present. Between 400,000 years ago and the second interglacial period in the Middle Pleistocene, around 250,000 years ago, the trend in cranial expansion and the elaboration of stone tool technologies developed, providing evidence for a transition from H. erectus to H. sapiens. The direct evidence suggests there was a migration of H. erectus out of Africa, then a further speciation of H. sapiens from H. erectus in Africa (there is little evidence that this speciation occurred elsewhere). Then a subsequent migration within and out of Africa eventually replaced the earlier dispersed H. erectus. This migration and origin theory is usually referred to as the single-origin theory. However, the current evidence does not preclude multiregional speciation, either. This is a hotly debated area in paleoanthropology. This article is about modern humans. ... The Pleistocene epoch (IPA: ) on the geologic timescale is the period from 1,808,000 to 11,550 years BP. The Pleistocene epoch had been intended to cover the worlds recent period of repeated glaciations. ... Cranial capacity is a measure of the volume of the interior of the cranium (also called the braincase or brainpan) of those vertebrates who have both a cranium and a brain. ... This article is about modern humans. ... Human migration denotes any movement of groups of people from one locality to another, rather than of individual wanderers. ... Charles Darwins first sketch of an evolutionary tree from his First Notebook on Transmutation of Species (1837) Speciation is the evolutionary process by which new biological species arise. ... In paleoanthropology, the single-origin hypothesis (or Out-of-Africa model) is one of two accounts of the origin of anatomically modern humans, Homo sapiens. ... Paleoanthropology, which combines the disciplines of paleontology and physical anthropology, is the study of ancient humans as found in fossil hominid evidence such as petrifacted bones and footprints. ...


Current research has established that human beings are genetically highly homogenous, that is the DNA of individuals is more alike than usual for most species, which may have resulted from their relatively recent evolution or the Toba catastrophe. Distinctive genetic characteristics have arisen, however, primarily as the result of small groups of people moving into new environmental circumstances. Such small groups are initially highly inbred, allowing the relatively rapid transmission of traits favorable to the new environment. These adapted traits are a very small component of the Homo sapiens genome and include such outward "racial" characteristics as skin color and nose form in addition to internal characteristics such as the ability to breathe more efficiently in high altitudes. Eruption column rising, Mount Redoubt, Alaska According to the Toba catastrophe theory, modern human evolution was affected by a recent, large volcanic event. ...


H. sapiens idaltu, from Ethiopia, lived from about 160,000 years ago (proposed subspecies). It is the oldest known anatomically modern human. Trinomial name †Homo sapiens idaltu White et al, 2003 Homo sapiens idaltu (roughly translated as elderly wise man) is an extinct subspecies of Homo sapiens that lived almost 160,000 years ago in Pleistocene Africa. ...


Homo floresiensis

H. floresiensis, which lived about 100,000–12,000 years ago has been nicknamed hobbit for its small size, possibly a result of insular dwarfism.[22] H. floresiensis is intriguing both for its size and its age, being a concrete example of a recent species of the genus Homo that exhibits derived traits not shared with modern humans. In other words, H. floresiensis share a common ancestor with modern humans, but split from the modern human lineage and followed a distinct evolutionary path. The main find was a skeleton believed to be a woman of about 30 years of age. Found in 2003 it has been dated to approximately 18,000 years old. Her brain size was only 380 cm³ (which can be considered small even for a chimpanzee). She was only 1 meter in height. Binomial name P. Brown , 2004 Homo floresiensis (Man of Flores, nicknamed Hobbit) is the name for a possible species in the genus Homo, remarkable for its small body, small brain, and survival until relatively recent times. ... For other uses, see Hobbit (disambiguation). ... Insular dwarfism is the process and condition of the reduction in size of large animals - almost always mammals - when their gene pool is limited to a very small environment, primarily islands. ...


However, there is an ongoing debate over whether H. floresiensis is indeed a separate species.[23] Some scientists presently believe that H. floresiensis was a modern H. sapiens suffering from pathological dwarfism.[24] This hypothesis is supported in part, because the modern humans who live on Flores, the island where the skeleton was found, are pygmies. This coupled with pathological dwarfism could indeed create a hobbit-like human. The other major attack on H. floresiensis is that it was found with tools only associated with H. sapiens.[24] Baka dancers in the East Province of Cameroon Batwa dancers in Uganda This article is about the Pygmy people. ...


Comparative table of Homo species

Bolded species names indicate the existence of numerous fossil records.
Species Lived when (mya) Lived where Adult length (m) Adult weight (kg) Brain volume (cm³) Fossil record Discovery /
publication of name
H. habilis 2.5–1.4 East Africa 1.0–1.5 30–55 600 many 1960/1964
H. rudolfensis 1.9 Kenya       1 skull 1972/1986
H. georgicus 1.8–1.6 Georgia     600 few 1999/2002
H. ergaster 1.9–1.25 East and Southern Africa 1.9   700–850 many 1975
H. erectus 2–0.3 Africa, Eurasia (Java, China, Vietnam, Caucasus) 1.8 60 900–1100 many 1891/1892
H. cepranensis 0.8 Italy       1 skull cap 1994/2003
H. antecessor 0.8–0.35 Spain, England 1.75 90 1000 3 sites 1994/1997
H. heidelbergensis 0.6–0.25 Europe, Africa 1.8 60 1100–1400 many 1907/1908
H. rhodesiensis 0.3–0.12 Zambia     1300 very few 1921
H. neanderthalensis 0.23–0.024 Europe, West Asia 1.6 55–70 (heavily built) 1200–1700 many 1829/1864
H. sapiens sapiens 0.25–present worldwide 1.4–1.9 55–80 1000–1850 still living —/1758
H. sapiens idaltu 0.16 Ethiopia     1450 3 craniums 1997/2003
H. floresiensis 0.10–0.012 Indonesia 1.0 25 400 7 individuals 2003/2004

For other uses of mya, see mya (disambiguation). ... Binomial name Leakey et al, 1964 Homo habilis (pronounced ) (handy man, skillful person) is a species of the genus Homo, which lived from approximately 2. ... Binomial name †Homo rudolfensis Alexeev, 1986 Homo rudolfensis is a fossil hominin species proposed in 1986 by V. P. Alexeev for the specimen Skull 1470 (KNM ER 1470)[1]. Originally thought to be a member of the species Homo habilis, the fossil was the center of much debate concerning its... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Binomial name †Homo ergaster Groves & Mazak, 1975 Homo ergaster (working man) is an extinct hominid species (or subspecies, according to some authorities) which lived throughout eastern and southern Africa between 1. ... Binomial name (Dubois, 1892) Synonyms † Pithecanthropus erectus † Sinanthropus pekinensis † Javanthropus soloensis † Meganthropus paleojavanicus Homo erectus (Latin: upright man) is an extinct species of the genus Homo. ... Binomial name †Homo cepranensis Mallegni et al, 2003 Homo cepranensis is a proposed name for a hominin species discovered in 1994 known from only one skull cap. ... Binomial name †Homo antecessor Bermudez de Castro et al. ... Binomial name †Homo heidelbergensis Schoetensack, 1908 Homo heidelbergensis (Heidelberg Man) is an extinct species of the genus Homo and the direct ancestor of Homo neanderthalensis in Europe. ... Binomial name †Homo rhodesiensis Woodward, 1921 Rhodesian Man (Homo rhodesiensis) is a hominin fossil that was described from a cranium found in an iron and zinc mine in Northern Rhodesia (now Kabwe, Zambia) in 1921 by Tom Zwiglaar, a Swiss miner. ... For other uses, see Neanderthal (disambiguation). ... This article is about modern humans. ... Trinomial name †Homo sapiens idaltu White et al, 2003 Homo sapiens idaltu (roughly translated as elderly wise man) is an extinct subspecies of Homo sapiens that lived almost 160,000 years ago in Pleistocene Africa. ... Binomial name P. Brown , 2004 Homo floresiensis (Man of Flores, nicknamed Hobbit) is the name for a possible species in the genus Homo, remarkable for its small body, small brain, and survival until relatively recent times. ...

Use of tools

Precisely when early humans started to use tools is difficult to determine, because the more primitive these tools are (for example, sharp-edged stones) the more difficult it is to decide whether they are natural objects or human artifacts. There is some evidence that the australopithecines (4 mya) may have used broken bones as tools, but this is debated.


Stone tools

Stone tools are first attested around 2.6 million years ago, when H. habilis in Eastern Africa used so-called pebble tools, choppers made out of round pebbles that had been split by simple strikes.[25] This marks the beginning of the Paleolithic, or Old Stone Age; its end is taken to be the end of the last Ice Age, around 10,000 years ago. The Paleolithic is subdivided into the Lower Paleolithic (Early Stone Age, ending around 350,000–300,000 years ago), the Middle Paleolithic (Middle Stone Age, until 50,000–30,000 years ago), and the Upper Paleolithic. Olduwan, earlier spelled Oldowan or sometimes Oldawan, is an anthropological designation for an industry of stone tools used by prehistoric hominids of the Lower Paleolithic. ... Archaeologists define a chopper as a pebble tool with an irregular cutting edge formed through the removal of flakes from one side of a stone. ... // The Paleolithic is a prehistoric era distinguished by the development of stone tools. ... The Lower Paleolithic (or Lower Palaeolithic) is the earliest subdivision of the Paleolithic or Old Stone Age. ... The Middle Paleolithic (or Middle Palaeolithic) is the second subdivision of the Paleolithic or Old Stone Age as it is understood in Europe, Africa and Asia. ... The Upper Paleolithic (or Upper Palaeolithic) is the third and last subdivision of the Paleolithic or Old Stone Age as it is understood in Europe, Africa and Asia. ...


The period from 700,000–300,000 years ago is also known as the Acheulean, when H. ergaster (or erectus) made large stone hand-axes out of flint and quartzite, at first quite rough (Early Acheulian), later "retouched" by additional, more subtle strikes at the sides of the flakes. After 350,000 BP (Before Present) the more refined so-called Levallois technique was developed. It consisted of a series of consecutive strikes, by which scrapers, slicers ("racloirs"), needles, and flattened needles were made.[25] Finally, after about 50,000 BP, ever more refined and specialized flint tools were made by the Neanderthals and the immigrant Cro-Magnons (knives, blades, skimmers). In this period they also started to make tools out of bone. Acheulean hand-axes from Kent. ... Acheulean handaxes from Kent. ... This article is about the sedimentary rock. ... Quartzite Quartzite (from German Quarzit[1]) is a hard, metamorphic rock which was originally sandstone. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into photo manipulation. ... In archaeology, a lithic flake is a thin, sharp fragment of stone that results from the process of lithic reduction. ... Before Present (BP) years are the units of time (counted backwards to the past) used to report raw radiocarbon ages and dates referenced to the BP scale origin in the year AD 1950 (identical to 1950 CE). ... The Levallois technique is a name given by archaeologists to a distinctive type of flint knapping developed by humans during the Palaeolithic period. ... For the avant garde collective, see Cromagnon (band). ...


The "modern man" debate and the Great Leap Forward

Until about 50,000–40,000 years ago the use of stone tools seems to have progressed stepwise: each phase (habilis, ergaster, neanderthal) started at a higher level than the previous one, but once that phase had started further development was slow. In other words, one might call these Homo species culturally conservative. After 50,000 BP, what Jared Diamond, author of The Third Chimpanzee, and other anthropologists characterize as a Great Leap Forward, human culture apparently started to change at much greater speed: "modern" humans started to bury their dead carefully, made clothing out of hides, developed sophisticated hunting techniques (such as pitfall traps, or driving animals to fall off cliffs), and made cave paintings.[26] This speed-up of cultural change seems connected with the arrival of modern humans, homo sapiens. As human culture advanced, different populations of humans began to create novelty in existing technologies. Artifacts such as fish hooks, buttons and bone needles begin to show signs of variation among different populations of humans, something that had not been seen in human cultures prior to 50,000 BP. Typically, neanderthalensis populations are found with technology similar to other contemporary neanderthalensis populations. Jared Mason Diamond (b. ... The Third Chimpanzee: The Evolution and Future of the Human Animal (ISBN 0-06-098403-1), originally published in English in 1992, is the first book-length work of non-fiction from Jared Diamond, evolutionary biologist, physiologist and award-winning author. ... Cave or Rock Paintings are paintings on cave or rock walls and ceilings, usually dating to prehistoric times. ...


Theoretically, modern human behavior is taken to include four ingredient capabilities: abstract thinking (concepts free from specific examples), planning (taking steps to achieve a further goal), innovation (finding new solutions), and symbolic behaviour (such as images, or rituals). Among concrete examples of modern human behaviour, anthropologists include specialization of tools, use of jewelry and images (such as cave drawings), organization of living space, rituals (for example, burials with grave gifts), specialized hunting techniques, exploration of less hospitable geographical areas, and barter trade networks. Debate continues whether there was indeed a "revolution" leading to modern humans ("the big bang of human consciousness"), or a more gradual evolution.[27] This article is about the concept of abstraction in general. ... For planning in AI, see automated planning and scheduling. ... Barter is a type of trade in which goods or services are exchanged for other goods and/or services; no money is involved in the transaction. ...


Models of human evolution

In a recent article, Leonard Lieberman and Fatimah Jackson have called attention to the fact that although the concepts of cline, population, and ethnicity, as well as humanitarian and political concerns, have led many scientists away from the notion of race, a recent survey showed that physical anthropologists were evenly divided as to whether race is a valid biological concept. Noting that among physical anthropologists the vast majority of opposition to the race concept comes from population geneticists, any new support for a biological concept of race will likely come from another source, namely, the study of human evolution. They therefore ask what, if any, implications current models of human evolution may have for any biological conception of race.[28]


Today, all humans are classified as belonging to the species Homo sapiens sapiens. However, this is not the first species of hominids: the first species of genus Homo, Homo habilis evolved in East Africa at least 2 million years ago, and members of this species populated different parts of Africa in a relatively short time. Homo erectus evolved more than 1.8 million years ago, and by 1.5 million years ago had spread throughout the Old World. Virtually all physical anthropologists agree that Homo sapiens evolved out of Homo erectus. Anthropologists have been divided as to whether Homo sapiens evolved as one interconnected species from H. erectus (called the Multiregional Model, or the Regional Continuity Model), or evolved only in East Africa, and then migrated out of Africa and replaced H. erectus populations throughout the Old World (called the Out of Africa Model or the Complete Replacement Model). Anthropologists continue to debate both possibilities, and the evidence is technically ambiguous as to which model is correct, although most anthropologists currently favor the Out of Africa model. Human beings are defined variously in biological, spiritual, and cultural terms, or in combinations thereof. ...


The multiregional model

Advocates of the Multiregional model, primarily Milford Wolpoff and his associates, have argued that the simultaneous evolution of H. sapiens in different parts of Europe and Asia would have been possible if there was a degree of gene flow between archaic populations.[29] Similarities of morphological features between archaic European and Chinese populations and modern H. sapiens from the same regions, Wolpoff argues, support a regional continuity only possible within the Multiregional model.[30] Wolpoff and others further argue that this model is consistent with clinal patterns of phenotypic variation (Wolpoff 1993). Lieberman and Jackson have related this theory to race with the following statement: To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Milford H. Wolpoff (born 1942, Chicago, Illinois) is a physical anthropologist. ... In population genetics, gene flow (also known as gene migration) is the transfer of alleles of genes from one population to another. ... In population genetics, a cline is a gradual change of a character or feature (phenotype) in a species over a geographical area, often as a result of environmental heterogeneity. ...

The major implication for race in the multiregional evolution continuity model involves the time depth of a million or more years in which race differentiation might evolve in diverse ecological regions [...]. This must be balanced against the degree of gene flow and the transregional operation of natural selection on encephalization due to development of tools and, more broadly, culture.[31]

The out of Africa model

See also: Recent single origin hypothesis

According to the Out of Africa Model, developed by Christopher Stringer and Peter Andrews, modern H. sapiens evolved in Africa 200,000 years ago. Homo sapiens began migrating from Africa around 50,000 years ago and would eventually replace existing hominid species in Europe and Asia.[32][33] The Out of Africa Model has gained support by recent research using mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). After analysing genealogy trees constructed using 133 types of mtDNA, they concluded that all were descended from a woman from Africa, dubbed Mitochondrial Eve.[34] Lieberman and Jackson have related this theory to race with the following comment: Map of early human migrations according to mitochondrial population genetics In paleoanthropology, the recent single-origin hypothesis (RSOH, or Out-of-Africa model, or Replacement Hypothesis) is one of two accounts of the origin of anatomically modern humans, Homo sapiens. ... Chris Stringer (born 1947) is a British anthropologist and one of the leading proponents of the recent single-origin hypothesis or Out of Africa theory, which hypothesizes that modern humans originated in Africa over 100,000 years ago and replaced the worlds archaic human species, such as Homo erectus... Mitochondrial DNA (some captions in German) Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) is the DNA located in organelles called mitochondria. ... Mitochondrial Eve (mt-mrca) is the name given by researchers to the woman who is the matrilineal most recent common ancestor (MRCA) for all living humans. ...

There are three major implications of this model for the race concept. First, the shallow time dimension minimizes the degree to which racial differences could have evolved [...]. Second, the mitochondrial DNA model presents a view that is very much different from Carleton Coon's (1962) concerning the time at which Africans passed the threshold from archaic to modern, thereby minimizing race differences and avoiding racist implications. However, the model, as interpreted by Wainscoat et al. (1989:34), does describe "a major division of human populations into an African and an Eurasian group." This conclusion could best be used to emphasize the degree of biological differences, and thereby provide support for the race concept. Third, the replacement of preexisting members of genus Homo (with little gene flow) implies several possible causes from disease epidemics to extermination. If the latter, then from a contemporary viewpoint, xenophobia or racism may have been practiced"[35]

Comparison of the two models

Lieberman and Jackson have argued that while advocates of both the Multiregional Model and the Out of Africa Model use the word race and make racial assumptions, none define the term.[31] They conclude that "Each model has implications that both magnify and minimize the differences between races. Yet each model seems to take race and races as a conceptual reality. The net result is that those anthropologists who prefer to view races as a reality are encouraged to do so" and conclude that students of human evolution would be better off avoiding the word race, and instead describe genetic differences in terms of populations and clinal gradations.[36]


Notable human evolution researchers

  • James Burnett, Lord Monboddo, a British judge most famous today as a founder of modern comparative historical linguistics
  • Charles Darwin, a British naturalist who documented considerable evidence that species originate through evolutionary change
  • Richard Dawkins, a British ethologist, evolutionary biologist who has promoted a gene-centered view of evolution
  • J. B. S. Haldane, a British geneticist and evolutionary biologist
  • Henry McHenry, an American anthropologist who specializes in studies of human evolution, the origins of bipedality, and paleoanthropology
  • Louis Leakey, an African archaeologist and naturalist whose work was important in establishing human evolutionary development in Africa
  • Richard Leakey, an African paleontologist and archaeologist, son of Louis Leakey
  • Svante Pääbo, a Swedish biologist specializing in evolutionary genetics
  • Jeffrey H. Schwartz, an American physical anthropologist and professor of biological anthropology
  • Leonard Shlain, an American surgeon and author of three books
  • Erik Trinkaus, a prominent American paleoanthropologist and expert on Neanderthal biology and human evolution
  • Milford H. Wolpoff, an American paleoanthropologist who leading proponent of the multiregional evolution hypothesis
  • Sir Alister Hardy, a British zoologist, who first hypothesised the aquatic ape theory of human evolution

James Burnett, Lord Monboddo (1714 - May 26, 1799) was a Scottish judge, scholar and eccentric. ... For other people of the same surname, and places and things named after Charles Darwin, see Darwin. ... Clinton Richard Dawkins, FRS (born March 26, 1941) is a British ethologist, evolutionary biologist and popular science writer who holds the Charles Simonyi Chair for the Public Understanding of Science at the University of Oxford. ... John Burdon Sanderson Haldane (November 5, 1892 – December 1, 1964), who normally used J.B.S. as a first name, was a British geneticist and evolutionary biologist. ... Henry McHenry is a professor of anthropology at the University of California, Davis, specializing in studies of human evolution, the origins of bipedality, and paleoanthropology. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... In 1977, Leaky sat next to the rare Half Monkey Half Man, who took a bite out of him, and made Leaky cry. ... Svante Pääbo is a biologist specializing in evolutionary genetics. ... Jeffrey H. Schwartz, PhD, is a physical anthropologist and professor of biological anthropology at the University of Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. ... Dr. Leonard Shlain is a surgeon and author of three books. ... Erik Trinkaus is a prominent paleoanthropologist and expert on Neanderthal biology and evolution. ... Milford H. Wolpoff (born in 1942 in Chicago, Illinois) is a physical anthropologist. ... Sir Alister Hardy (1896 - 1985) was an Oxford-educated marine biologist, expert on zooplankton and marine ecosystems. ...

Species list

This list will conduct in chronological order, following genus. For other uses, see Genus (disambiguation). ...

Binomial name Sahelanthropus tchadensis Sahelanthropus tchadensis is an early fossil hominid, approximately 7 million years old. ... Binomial name Sahelanthropus tchadensis Sahelanthropus tchadensis is an early fossil hominid, approximately 7 million years old from the Miocene. ... Binomial name Orrorin tugenensis Orrorin tugenensis is an extinct species of hominin that is closely related to humans and is the only species classified in genus Orrorin. ... Binomial name †Orrorin tugenensis Senut et al, 2001 Orrorin tugenensis is considered as the second oldest possible hominin ancestor related to modern humans (other than Sahelanthropus tchadensis) and is the only species classified in genus Orrorin. ... Species †Ardipithecus kadabba †Ardipithecus ramidus Ardipithecus is a very early hominin genus (subfamily Homininae). ... For the song by Modest Mouse, see Sad Sappy Sucker. ... Binomial name †Australopithecus anamensis Leakey et al, 1995 Australopithecus anamensis is a fossil species of Australopithecus. ... Binomial name Johanson & White, 1978 Australopithecus afarensis is an extinct hominid which lived between 3. ... Binomial name Australopithecus bahrelghazali Brunet et al. ... Binomial name Dart, 1925 Australopithecus africanus was an early hominid, an australopithecine, who lived between 2-3 million years ago in the Pliocene. ... Binomial name †Australopithecus garhi Asfaw et al, 1997 Australopithecus garhi is a gracile australopithecine species whose fossils were discovered in 1996 by a research team led by Ethiopian paleontologist Berhane Asfaw and including Tim White, an American paleontologist researcher. ... Species †Paranthropus aethiopicus †Paranthropus boisei †Paranthropus robustus The robust australopithecines, members of the extinct hominin genus Paranthropus (Greek para beside, Greek anthropos human), were bipedal hominins that probably descended from the gracile australopithecine hominins (Australopithecus). ... Binomial name †Paranthropus aethiopicus (Olson, 1985) Paranthropus aethiopicus is an extinct species of Paranthropus. ... Binomial name †Paranthropus boisei (Mary Leakey, 1959) Paranthropus boisei (originally called Zinjanthropus boisei and then Australopithecus boisei until recently) was an early hominid and described as the largest of the Paranthropus species. ... Binomial name Paranthropus robustus Broom, 1938 Paranthropus robustus was originally discovered in Southern Africa in 1938. ... Kenyanthropus is a possible hominid genus acording to some paleoanthropologists. ... Binomial name †Kenyanthropus platyops Leakey et al. ... Species Homo sapiens See text for extinct species. ... Binomial name Leakey et al, 1964 Homo habilis (pronounced ) (handy man, skillful person) is a species of the genus Homo, which lived from approximately 2. ... Binomial name †Homo rudolfensis Alexeev, 1986 Homo rudolfensis is a fossil hominin species proposed in 1986 by V. P. Alexeev for the specimen Skull 1470 (KNM ER 1470)[1]. Originally thought to be a member of the species Homo habilis, the fossil was the center of much debate concerning its... Binomial name †Homo ergaster Groves & Mazak, 1975 Homo ergaster (working man) is an extinct hominid species (or subspecies, according to some authorities) which lived throughout eastern and southern Africa between 1. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Binomial name (Dubois, 1892) Synonyms † Pithecanthropus erectus † Sinanthropus pekinensis † Javanthropus soloensis † Meganthropus paleojavanicus Homo erectus (Latin: upright man) is an extinct species of the genus Homo. ... Binomial name †Homo cepranensis Mallegni et al, 2003 Homo cepranensis is a proposed name for a hominin species discovered in 1994 known from only one skull cap. ... Binomial name †Homo antecessor Bermudez de Castro et al. ... Binomial name †Homo heidelbergensis Schoetensack, 1908 Homo heidelbergensis (Heidelberg Man) is an extinct species of the genus Homo and the direct ancestor of Homo neanderthalensis in Europe. ... Homo rhodesiensis (AKA Rhodesian Man, or Broken Hill Skull) is a homo species resembling Homo neandertalis, but whose remains were found in Africa. ... Binomial name Homo neanderthalensis King, 1864 The Neanderthal or Neandertal was a species of genus Homo (Homo neanderthalensis) that inhabited Europe and parts of western Asia from about 230,000 to 29,000 years ago (in the Middle Palaeolithic, early Stone Age). ... Trinomial name †Homo sapiens idaltu White et al, 2003 Homo sapiens idaltu (roughly translated as elderly wise man) is an extinct subspecies of Homo sapiens that lived almost 160,000 years ago in Pleistocene Africa. ... Homo sapiens (Latin: wise man) is the scientific name for the human species. ... For the avant garde collective, see Cromagnon (band). ... Human beings are defined variously in biological, spiritual, and cultural terms, or in combinations thereof. ... Binomial name P. Brown , 2004 Homo floresiensis (Man of Flores, nicknamed Hobbit) is the name for a possible species in the genus Homo, remarkable for its small body, small brain, and survival until relatively recent times. ...

Additional notes

Australopithecus Politics is the process by which decisions are made within groups. ... Religious is a term with both a technical definition and folk use. ... The creation-evolution controversy (also termed the creation vs. ... The Hybrid-origin hypothesis of human origins argues that all of the genetic variation between the contemporary human races is attributable to genetic inheritance from two widely divergent hominid species, or subspecies, that were geographically dispersed throughout Africa, Southeast Asia and the Indian subcontinent, prior to the evolution of modern... This article is about the biological superfamily. ... Science fiction is a form of speculative fiction principally dealing with the impact of imagined science and technology, or both, upon society and persons as individuals. ... Charles Darwins first sketch of an evolutionary tree from his First Notebook on Transmutation of Species (1837) Speciation is the evolutionary process by which new biological species arise. ... Two lichens on a rock, in two different ecological niches In ecology, a niche; (pronounced nich, neesh or nish)[1] is a term describing the relational position of a species or population in its ecosystem[1]. The ecological niche; describes how an organism or population responds to the distribution of... Four of the 13 finch species found on the Galápagos Archipelago, and thought to have evolved by an adaptive radiation that diversified their beak shapes to adapt them to different food sources. ... Bumblebees and the flowers they pollinate have co-evolved so that both have become dependent on each other for survival. ... Participant evolution is a process of deliberately redesigning the human body and brain using technological means, with the goal of removing biological limitations. ... Species Pan troglodytes Pan paniscus Chimpanzees, also called chimps, are the common name for two species in the genus Pan. ... For other uses of mya, see mya (disambiguation). ...


References

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For other people of the same surname, and places and things named after Charles Darwin, see Darwin. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... is the 86th day of the year (87th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... For information on Wikipedia press releases, see Wikipedia:Press releases. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 330th day of the year (331st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Also see: 2002 (number). ... is the 234th day of the year (235th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... FOXP2 (forkhead box P2) is a gene that is implicated in the development of language skills,[1] including grammatical competence. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Caucasus Mountains. ... John Burdon Sanderson Haldane (November 5, 1892 - December 1, 1964), who normally used J.B.S. as a first name, was a geneticist born in Scotland and educated at Eton and Oxford University. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 220th day of the year (221st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ...

Further reading

  • Flinn, M. V., Geary, D. C., & Ward, C. V. (2005). Ecological dominance, social competition, and coalitionary arms races: Why humans evolved extraordinary intelligence. Evolution and Human Behavior, 26, 10-46. Full text.PDF (345 KiB)

“PDF” redirects here. ... A kibibyte (a contraction of kilo binary byte) is a unit of information or computer storage, commonly abbreviated KiB (never kiB). 1 kibibyte = 210 bytes = 1,024 bytes The kibibyte is closely related to the kilobyte, which can be used either as a synonym for kibibyte or to refer to...

See also

This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... Archaeogenetics, a term coined by Colin Renfrew, refers to the application of the techniques of molecular population genetics to the study of the human past. ... In the unilineal evolution model at left, all cultures progress through set stages, while in the multilineal evolution model at right, distinctive culture histories are emphasized. ... Dual inheritance theory, (or DIT), in sharp contrast to the notion that culture overrides biology, posits that humans are products of the interaction between biological evolution and cultural evolution. ... Dysgenics is a term applied by some researchers to describe the evolutionary weakening of a population of organisms relative to their environment, often due to relaxation of natural selection or the occurrence of negative selection. ... This article is about biological evolution. ... Evolutionary medicine or Darwinian medicine is the field of knowledge that integrates medicine with evolutionary biology, more specifically with the adaptationist program. ... Evolutionary neuroscience is a young field which awaits a general unified theory of neuroscience in order for its full integration into the accepted framework of evolutionary biology. ... Evolutionary psychology (abbreviated EP) is a theoretical approach to psychology that attempts to explain mental and psychological traits—such as memory, perception, or language—as adaptations, i. ... FOXP2 (forkhead box P2) is a gene that is implicated in the development of language skills,[1] including grammatical competence. ... Geological time put in a diagram called a geological clock, showing the relative lengths of the eons of the Earths history. ... The nature and origins of hominid intelligence is a much-studied and much-debated topic, of natural interest to humans as the most successful and intelligent hominid species. ... Human behavioral ecology (HBE) or human evolutionary ecology applies the principles of evolutionary theory and optimization to the study of human behavioral and cultural diversity. ... The muscles connected to the ears of a human do not develop enough to have the same mobility allowed to monkeys. ... Mitochondrial Eve (mt-mrca) is the name given by researchers to the woman who is the matrilineal most recent common ancestor (MRCA) for all living humans. ... The most recent common ancestor (MRCA) of any set of organisms is the most recent individual from which all organisms in the group are directly descended. ... The multiregional origin hypothesis of human origins holds that some, or all, of the genetic variation between the contemporary human races is attributable to genetic inheritance from hominid species, or subspecies, that were geographically dispersed throughout Asia, and possibly Europe and Australasia, prior to the evolution of modern Homo sapiens... Physical anthropology, often called biological anthropology, studies the mechanisms of biological evolution, genetic inheritance, human adaptability and variation, primatology, primate morphology, and the fossil record of human evolution. ... In paleoanthropology, the single-origin hypothesis (or Out-of-Africa model) is one of two accounts of the origin of anatomically modern humans, Homo sapiens. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... In human genetics, Y-chromosomal Adam (Y-mrca) is the male counterpart to mitochondrial Eve: the most recent common ancestor from whom all male human Y chromosomes are descended. ...

External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
Human Evolution (8461 words)
To the human, however, in his need to establish his place and purpose in the universe, the most important material is biological and the most important process is evolution, far it is only here that the human can learn to understand himself, an understanding that is vital to his survival.
Evolution had honed the species to fit the environment and was now in balance.
Evolution, through the liberal application of death and hardship, had built a strong body and a sound mind by the time of the appearance of Homo sapiens sapiens.
Human Evolution - MSN Encarta (1243 words)
Humans and the so-called great apes (large apes) of Africa—chimpanzees (including bonobos, or so-called pygmy chimpanzees) and gorillas—share a common ancestor that lived sometime between 8 million and 6 million years ago.
Paleoanthropology is a subfield of anthropology, the study of human culture, society, and biology.
Humans belong to the scientific order named Primates, a group of over 230 species of mammals that also includes lemurs, lorises, tarsiers, monkeys, and apes.
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