The ancestors of modern humans   Leave a comment


How is man created? Humans and apes have a common ancestor, it is researchers are largely in agreement (except of course some religiously motivated scientists). Although more and more fossils are found from the early days, there is no clarity as to what kind of people today descended in a direct line, and which was an evolutionary dead end. Due to the limited durability of DNA, the relationships can not be genetically determined, therefore, each classification of the anatomical features found fossils based.Below is an excerpt from the (possible) “human family tree”.



(C) Reuters (Ho New / Reuters)

The oldest method, which assumes a certain probability that it was an ancestor of modern humans, Ardipithecus is. He lived about 4.4 million years ago , his brain corresponded with an average of 330 cc only a quarter of the size of a modern human brain. There is evidence that in this kind of an upright gait began to develop.


Australopithecus anamensis(C) AP

The oldest so far discovered species of the genus Australopithecus is called Australopithecus anamensis. The remains have been discovered around 4.1 million years old. The type had an unusual combination of ape and human-like characteristics.


Australopithecus afarensis(C) AP (DIRK VAN Tuerenhout)

This type also includes the famous skeleton “Lucy” was found in Ethiopia. It made ​​his discovery in 1974 of a stir because the pelvic bones clear traces of upright posture can be recognized. The fossil is about 3.2 million yearsold.


Australopithecus Africanus(C) Reuters (Reuters Photographer / Reuters)

A. Africanus lived around 2.5 million years ago . Compared to A. afarensis, he was already similar to modern man, his brain volume stood at about 500 cm ³. However, the arms of the famous discovery “Mrs Ples” verhälntnismäßig are longer, the legs shorter than that of Lucy. Pictured is to see “Little Foot”, a fossil that could not yet be assigned to any type of security and similarities to A. africanus has.


Australopithecus sediba(c) REUTERS (� Mike Hutchings / Reuters)

A. sediba lived about 2 to 1.8 million years ago . Thus it is with him at the youngest known species of the genus Australopithecus. He has lived at the same time represented the genus Homo. His brain was probably smaller than some older Australopithecus species, according to research.


Homo Rudolfensis


Before and 2.3 million is 2,5 years, Homo Rudolfensis developed, the first species of the genus Homo. His brain was larger than that of the australopithecines, and he put forth even simple tools. This image based on the image Berlin Museum of Natural History Homo Rudolfensis Schaedel.


Homo habilis

(C) EPA (Stephen Morrison)

Another early member of the genus Homo was H. habilis. He lived about 1.8 million years. He might have been able to communicate with a primitive language. 
habilis Some researchers even arrange the australopithecines, because there are different views on the genus-defining characteristics in professional circles.


Homo Erectus

(C) EPA (Stephen Morrison)

Before 1.8 million years ago Homo erectus appeared on the screen (some researchers distinguish between an older and a younger Homo ergaster Homo erectus – which is why there are sometimes differing ages). He made ​​the first human species demonstrated the advantage of fire and settled next to Africa to Europe and Asia.


Homo heidelbergensis

(C) Paul Hanna / Reuters

The ancestor of H. Neanderthalensis lived in about 1 million to 200,000 years . Anatomically found in H. heidelbergensis both characteristics of H. sapiens as well as those that are typical for H. Neanderthalensis. His brain volume was only slightly smaller than that of modern man.


Homo Neanderthalensis

(C) AP (Frank Franklin II)

The Neanderthals lived 200000-30000 years . Contrary to previous assumptions, it is unlikely that H. Neanderthalensis is a direct ancestor of H. sapiens. Rather, it is assumed that they were a side branch of the family tree, with H. erectus was probably the last common ancestor. The brain of the Neanderthal was average even slightly larger than in modern humans.


Homo Neanderthalensis II

(C) AP (Philippe Plailly)

Sort of looked like a Neanderthal man (-kind). A striking feature of the head shape is mainly the sweeping back of the head, the sloping forehead with distinctive Augenwülsten and barely pronounced chin. It is demonstrated by findings that H. sapiens and H. Neanderthalensis have lived for thousands of years together in the same area. Unclear and remains fiercely debated whether there was a gene flow between the two species.


Homo Sapiens

(C) Reuters (Yiorgos Karahalis / Reuters)

Modern humans H. sapiens has existed for about 160,000 years. He is the only species of hominids, who managed to colonize all of the continents. H. sapiens is today the only living species that evolved from a more than 4 million years lasting development.






Posted August 9, 2013 by kitokinimi in Uncategorized

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