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Encyclopedia > Peking Man
Peking Man
Fossil range: Pleistocene

Peking Man skull
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Primates
Family: Hominidae
Genus: Homo
Species: H. erectus
Subspecies: H. e. pekinensis
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. The remains were first discovered in 1923-27 during excavations at Zhoukoudian (Choukoutien) near Beijing (Peking), China. The finds have been dated from roughly 250,000-400,000 years ago in the Pleistocene. 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. ... Image File history File links This work is copyrighted. ... For other uses, see Scientific classification (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Animal (disambiguation). ... Typical Classes Subphylum Urochordata - Tunicates Ascidiacea Thaliacea Larvacea Subphylum Cephalochordata - Lancelets Subphylum Myxini - Hagfishes Subphylum Vertebrata - Vertebrates Petromyzontida - Lampreys Placodermi (extinct) Chondrichthyes - Cartilaginous fishes Acanthodii (extinct) Actinopterygii - Ray-finned fishes Actinistia - Coelacanths Dipnoi - Lungfishes Amphibia - Amphibians Reptilia - Reptiles Aves - Birds Mammalia - Mammals Chordates (phylum Chordata) include the vertebrates, together with... Typical classes Petromyzontidae (lampreys) Placodermi - extinct Chondrichthyes (cartilaginous fish) Acanthodii - extinct Actinopterygii (ray-finned fish) Actinistia (coelacanths) Dipnoi (lungfish) Amphibia (amphibians) Reptilia (reptiles) Aves (birds) Mammalia (mammals) Vertebrata is a subphylum of chordates, specifically, those with backbones or spinal columns. ... Subclasses & Infraclasses Subclass †Allotheria* Subclass Prototheria Subclass Theria Infraclass †Trituberculata Infraclass Metatheria Infraclass Eutheria Mammals (class Mammalia) are warm-blooded, vertebrate animals characterized by the presence of sweat glands, including those that produce milk, and by the presence of: hair, three middle ear bones used in hearing, and a neocortex... 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. ... Genera The hominids are the members of the biological family Hominidae (the great apes), which includes humans, chimpanzees, gorillas, and orangutans. ... Species Homo sapiens See text for extinct species. ... Binomial name (Dubois, 1892) Synonyms † Pithecanthropus erectus † Sinanthropus pekinensis † Javanthropus soloensis † Meganthropus paleojavanicus Homo erectus (Latin: upright man) or archanthropus is an extinct species of the genus Homo. ... Trinomial nomenclature is a taxonomic naming system that extends the standard system of binomial nomenclature by adding a third taxon. ... Davidson Black Dr. Davidson Black (1884 – 1934) was a Canadian paleoanthropologist, best known for his discovery of Sinanthropus pekinensis (now Homo erectus pekinensis). ... Binomial name (Dubois, 1892) Synonyms † Pithecanthropus erectus † Sinanthropus pekinensis † Javanthropus soloensis † Meganthropus paleojavanicus Homo erectus (Latin: upright man) or archanthropus is an extinct species of the genus Homo. ... Year 1923 (MCMXXIII) was a common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1927 (MCMXXVII) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Zhoukoudian Peking Man Site - the Caves (taken in July 2004) Zhoukoudian or Choukoutien (周口店) is a cave system near Beijing in China. ... “Peking” redirects here. ... 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. ...

Contents

Original fossils

Zhoukoudian Peking Man Site - the Museum (taken in July 2004). At the centre: what Peking Man looked like.
Zhoukoudian Peking Man Site - the Museum (taken in July 2004). At the centre: what Peking Man looked like.

First studies began at Zhoukoudian in 1923 with an investigation of a number of caves in the limestone there. Otto Zdansky was working for geologist Johan Gunnar Andersson who described this event in Children of the Yellow Earth. According to Andersson, a local man led him, American paleontologist Walter Granger and Zdansky to what is today known as the Dragon Bone Hill, a place full of fossilized bones. The party immediately began an excavation. After Andersson and Granger left the site three days later, Zdansky found fossil teeth that resembled human molars. He did not, however, disclose his finds to Andersson and Granger. In 1926, he took them to the Peking Union Medical College, in Peking, where Canadian anatomist Davidson Black analysed them. He later published his finds in the journal Nature. Zhoukoudian Site - Museum. ... Zhoukoudian Site - Museum. ... Zhoukoudian Peking Man Site - the Caves (taken in July 2004) Zhoukoudian or Choukoutien (周口店) is a cave system near Beijing in China. ... 2004 : January - February - March - April - May - June - July - August - September - October - November - December See also: July 2004 in sports Deaths in July • 31 David B. Haight • 29 Francis Crick • 29 Nafisa Joseph • 23 Joe Cahill • 23 Mehmood • 23 Illinois Jacquet • 23 Carlos Paredes... Zhoukoudian Peking Man Site - the Caves (taken in July 2004) Zhoukoudian or Choukoutien (周口店) is a cave system near Beijing in China. ... Year 1923 (MCMXXIII) was a common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Johan Gunnar Andersson (1874-1960), Swedish archaeologist, paleontologist and geologist, closely associated with the beginnings of Chinese archaeology in the 1920s. ... The name Walter Granger may refer to: Walter Granger (Star Trek), fictional 22nd-century captain of the SS Mariposa in a second-season episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation called Up the Long Ladder; Walter K. Granger (1888-1978), a member of the United States House of Representatives from... Zhoukoudian or Choukoutien (Chinese: ; pinyin: ) is a cave system near Beijing in China. ... Molars are the rearmost and most complicated kind of tooth in most mammals. ... Peking Union Medical College (中国协和医科大学) is a university in Beijing, China. ... Davidson Black Dr. Davidson Black (1884 – 1934) was a Canadian paleoanthropologist, best known for his discovery of Sinanthropus pekinensis (now Homo erectus pekinensis). ...


The first specimens of Homo erectus had been found in Java in 1891 by Eugene Dubois, with the Java Man initially being named Pithecanthropus erectus but later transferred to the genus Homo. Java (Indonesian, Javanese, and Sundanese: Jawa) is an island of Indonesia, and the site of its capital city, Jakarta. ... Year 1891 (MDCCCXCI) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Saturday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ... 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. ... “Pithecanthropus erectus” redirects here. ... Pithecanthropus erectus was the name first given to the Homo erectus specimen, also known as Java Man, by its discoverer Eugene Dubois. ... Species Homo sapiens See text for extinct species. ...


The Rockefeller Foundation agreed to fund the work at Zhoukoudian. By 1929, Chinese archaeologists Yang Zhongjian and Pei Wenzhong, and later Jia Lanpo, had taken over the excavation. Over the next seven years, they uncovered fossils of more than 40 specimens including 6 nearly complete skullcaps. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin and Franz Weidenreich were also involved. The Rockefeller Foundation (RF) is a prominent philanthropic organization based at 420 Fifth Avenue, New York City. ... Yang Zhongjian (C.C. Young) (1897-1979) supervised the collection and research of dinosaurs in China from 1933 into the 1970s. ... A skullcap can be : in anatomy, the top part of the skull as headgear, a type of cap Observant Jewish men wear yarmulkes, small cloth skull-caps Catholic clergy, including The Pope, wear skullcaps known as zucchetti. ... It has been suggested that noogenesis be merged into this article or section. ... Franz Weidenreich (7 June 1873, Edenkoben, Germany- 11 July 1948, New York City U.S.) was a German anatomist and physical anthropologist who studued human evolution. ...


Excavation ended in July 1937 when the Japanese occupied Beijing. Fossils of the Peking Man were placed in the safe at the Cenozoic Laboratory of the Peking Union Medical College. Eventually, in November 1941, secretary Hu Chengzi packed up the fossils so they could be sent to USA for safekeeping until the end of the war. They vanished en route to the port city of Qinghuangdao. They were probably in possession of a group of US marines who the Japanese captured when the war began between Japan and USA. Categories: China geography stubs | Cities in China ...


Various parties have tried to locate the fossils but, so far, without result. In 1972, a US financier Christopher Janus promised a $5,000 (U.S.) reward for the missing skulls; one woman contacted him, asking for $500,000 (U.S.) but she later vanished. In July 2005, the Chinese government founded a committee to find the bones to coincide with the 60th anniversary of the end of World War II. Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000...


There are also various theories of what might have happened, including a theory that the bones had sunk with a Japanese ship Awa Maru in 1945.


Subsequent Research

Excavations at Zhoukoudian resumed after the war, and parts of another skull were found in 1966. To date a number of other partial fossil remains have been found. The Peking Man Site at Zhoukoudian was listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site in 1987.[1] UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) is a specialized agency of the United Nations established in 1945. ... A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a specific site (such as a forest, mountain, lake, desert, monument, building, complex, or city) that has been nominated and confirmed for inclusion on the list maintained by the international World Heritage Programme administered by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, composed of 21 State... Year 1987 (MCMLXXXVII) was a common year starting on Thursday (link displays 1987 Gregorian calendar). ...


Paleontological conclusions

Because all the pre-war findings at Zhoukoudian were lost during transit to the USA, subsequent researchers have had to rely on casts and existing writings from the original discoverers.


Contiguous findings of animal remains and evidence of fire and tool usage, as well as the manufacturing of tools, were used to support H. erectus being the first "faber" or tool-worker. The analysis of the remains of "Peking Man" led to the claim that the Zhoukoudian and Java fossils were examples of the same broad stage of human evolution. This is also the official view of the Chinese Communist Party.


This interpretation was challenged in 1985 by Lewis Binford, who claimed that the Peking Man was a scavenger, not a hunter. The 1998 team of Steve Weiner of the Weizmann Institute of Science concluded that they had not found evidence that the Peking Man had used fire. Lewis Roberts Binford (born 1930) is an American archaeologist, known as the leader of the New Archaeology movement of the 1950s/60s. ... For a person who scavenges, see Waste picker. ... This article is about the hunting of prey by human society. ... Steve Weiner is a Canadian writer and animator. ... The Koffler accelerator, one of the best-known buildings on campus. ...


Relation to modern Chinese people

Some Chinese paleoanthropologists have asserted in the past that the modern Chinese are descendants of the Peking Man. However, modern genetic research does not support this hypothesis. A recent study undertaken by Chinese geneticist Jin Li showed that there was no inter-breeding between modern human immigrants to East Asia and Homo erectus, contradicting the Peking Man-hypothesis and affirming that the Chinese descended from Africans in accordance with the Recent single-origin hypothesis. [2] [3][4] However, some paleontologists see continuity in skeletal remains. [5] Jin Li (Chinese:金力, Jin Li) is a Chinese geneticist who led[1] the research that concluded that all East Asians, including the Chinese, originated from Africa, adding support to the Recent single-origin hypothesis of which he is considered[2] a leading proponent. ... 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. ...


  Results from FactBites:
 
Peking Man Site at Zhoukoudian (4440 words)
In the history of palaeoanthropology, the discovery of Peking Man was not the first one of its kind; however, the discovery established a definite status of this kind in the human evolutionary history.
The discovery of Peking Man enabled one to solve the long-lasting polemics that had continued since the discovery of Java man in the 19th century and proved that Homo erectus evolved from the ape.
From 1921 to 1966, unearthed Peking Man fossils were six nearly complete crania or skullcaps, 19 large fragments of skulls, numerous small fragments of skulls, 15 incomplete mandibles, 157 isolated teeth, three pieces of humerus, one clavicular, one lunate, and a tibia.
ScienceDaily: Peking Man (1457 words)
Peking Man (sometimes now called Beijing Man), also called Sinanthropus pekinensis (currently Homo erectus pekinensis), is an example of Homo erectus.
Homo heidelbergensis -- Homo heidelbergensis (Heidelberg Man) is an extinct species of the genus Homo and the thought to be a direct ancestor of Homo neanderthalensis in Europe.
Rhodesian Man -- 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.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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