Skip to comments.Skeleton Holds Key To Origin Of Man
Posted on 04/02/2007 7:09:39 PM PDT by blam
Skeleton holds key to origin of man
By Roger Highfield, Science Editor
Last Updated: 2:24am BST 03/04/2007
A skeleton of a possible hybrid between modern and more ancient humans has been found in China, which challenges the theory that modern man originated in Africa.
Most experts believe that our ancestors emerged in Africa more than 150,000 years ago and then migrated around the world.
However, in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Prof Erik Trinkaus and colleagues provide details of a skeleton found in 2003 from Tianyuan Cave near Beijing.
The skeleton is 42,000 to 38,500 years old, making it the oldest modern human skeleton from eastern Eurasia, and one of the oldest modern humans from the region.
Most of its features match those of modern man, though some are more like late archaic humans, including the Neanderthals. The authors conclude that, as our ancestors spread, they interbred with local, more ancient, types of human.
The researchers say it is unlikely that a simple spread of modern humans occurred east of Africa, especially because slightly younger skeletons have been found in eastern Eurasia with similar features.
"The partial skeleton from Tianyuan is an important find, since there is a dearth of material from east Asia to document how modern humans became established there," said Prof Chris Stringer of the Natural History Museum.
"Radiocarbon dates place the find close in age to the earliest Homo sapiens fossils so far discovered in Europe, Lebanon, Malaysia and Australia.
"Outside of Africa, only the early modern finds from Skhul and Qafzeh [in Israel], and possibly Liujiang from southern China, are of much greater antiquity."
Making this the world’s first skeleton key.
Paging professor Milford Wolpoff.
There are two widely held scientific theories concerning the origin of the human species. One posits a single cradle, generally thought to be in Africa, in which Homo sapiens originated.
This dominant theory is assisted by its charismatic spokesmodel Eve, a fictitious personification of a DNA strain that some scientists argue indicates a unique source for the Earth's human population. The other, decidedly less popular theory is known as multiregionalism.
Multiregionalists argue that populations may have originated in Africa, but these populations migrated to distant regions where the human species developed and took on different characteristics, known to scientists as biological diversity but more conventionally referred to as different races.
This divide is obviously controversial, and it is not always the steady eye of science that influences which model is deemed correct (or at least politically correct).
After all, one model promises a scientific verification of our common humanity, the other, interpreted too loosely, could result in a scientific rationale that hardens concepts of racial difference.
You knoooow what I like.
It is interesting that people that lived 25,000 years ago in a rock shelter near my home in Thailand had somewhat different tools than the first inhabitants of Australia. The Negritos, Andaman Islanders and Australians are all quite different than the people that have lived for considerable time right next door both in South Asia (Dravidian) and Southeast Asia. It is too bad that abuses of science of the beginning of the last century and before have poisoned the well of speculation.
Indeed. But with DNA analysis we have a non-subjective tool for determining descent (as opposed to the influence of climate and environment).
River valley civilizations emerged in different parts of the world at about the same times but without any real evidence of commmerce.
Or the first skeleton in the closet...
It’s amazing. New discoveries knock down one theory after another but the replacement theory is always posited as rock-solid proven fact. Often in error never in doubt.
If that is what you think, perhaps you need to study some evolution. Fossils that are excavated provide data points. The arrangements and interrelationships of those data points and millions of other related data points are provided by theories.
For the point of this article, it is not one theory vs. the other: it is two different wrinkles within the same overall theory. Either wrinkle, and the overall theory itself, fail to support both a young earth and creation at 4004 BC or thereabouts.
I don't trust them at all.
“Most experts believe that our ancestors emerged in Africa more than 150,000 years ago and then migrated around the world.”
It’s wonderful not to be an expert. There is no proof that man originated in Africa.
The Gobi desert is vast and inhospitable. Therefore, it is not researched.
Antartica is vast and inhospitable. Therefore, it is not researched.
Pseudo-scientists go where the going is easy and their theories are based on their easy going.
First published online as a Review in Advance on June 14, 2005
EARLY MODERN HUMANS
Department of Anthropology, Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri 63130; email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Perceptions of the emergence and spread of modern humans have changed recently through the reanalysis of fossils, an improved geochronological framework, and the discovery of a few specimens.
Early modern humans in various portions of the Old World exhibit complex and varying mosaics of archaic, modern, and regional morphological characteristics. On the basis of this pattern, in conjunction with the emerging chronology of the earliest modern humans, the paleontological data indicate an assimilation model for modern human origins, in which the earliest modern humans emerged in eastern Africa, dispersed briefly into southwestern Asia, and then subsequently spread into the remainder of Africa and southern Asia, eventually into higher latitude Eurasia.
The earliest modern humans outside of the core area of eastern Africa can be understood only if a variable degree of admixture with regional groups of late archaic humans occurred. Current and expected fossil and molecular data are unlikely to illuminate the degree of assimilation that took place in most regions of the Old World.
However, the current chronological and phylogenetic framework provides the basis for ongoing investigation of the nature of this Late Pleistocene transitional period.
But DNA goes wherever man goes. Here is one theory of how it happened: Journey of Mankind.
The multiregional idea is what I learned in grad school, many years ago. I have been partial to it ever since.
Yes dna does go whereever people go...
Now, about the dating factor. Uh huh, they are dating only the things they have found since they can’t date what they haven’t found and the sum total of their finds is insufficient for any plausable conclusions.
That’s a fact.