10 Important Events in Paleoanthropology

  • First Fossil

    First Fossil
    The first fossil that was found, was in Germany, idenfied as a Homo Neanderthalensis. However, the specie was actually discovered in 1829 at Engis, Belgium, and in 1848 at Forbes Quarry, Gibraltar, but they were not idenfied by that time. These two discoveries were actually the first human fossils ever found. The actualy date is not known, only the year is known. The specie is said that it lived 200,000 to 28,000 years ago, showing that they're common with Homo Sapiens (BH).
  • Darwin's Hypothesis

    Darwin's Hypothesis
    Basically, his ideas were important to paleoanthropology. He is considered as the "Father of Evolution". He hypothesized that fossils of early Human would be found in Africa, and also that humans today, share a common ancestor with the apes of Africa. His ideas were eventually rejected, because during his period, which was 1871; the time where paleoanthropology was not created yet.
  • Oldest non-African Specie Found

    The oldest non-African specie ever known was found by Dutch surgeon, Eugene Dubois in Indonesia. The specie was named Homo Erectus. It is said that it lived 1.89 to 70,000 years ago. It is believed that Homo Erectus was the last of human ancestor's tree line, sharing some common traits. The discovery is very important, because it is the oldest specie found outside of Africa (BH).
  • Taung Child

    It is a fossilised skull of a young Australopithecus africanus. The skull was found in Taung, Africa and the anthropologist Raymond Dart, was the one who described and named the specie. From that period, it was known that Africa had the oldest fossils, and the Taung Child has been said to live 2.8 million years ago and belongs to modern human family tree. (Smithsonian)
  • Paranthropus Boisei

    The British anthropologist named Mary Leakey and discovered Paranthropus Boisei in 1959. The specie was found at Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania and scientists said that it lived from 2.3 to 1.2 mya. It is said that the importance of the specie was that it disproved the "single specie hypothesis" in 1969 (Lamb)
  • The Handy Man

    A specie named Homo Habilis was discovered by two scientists, Louis and Mary Leakey, between 1960 and 1963 at Olduvai Gorge in Tanzania. The name stands for "handy man", because the specie was found underground with some tools. Scientists identifed that the specie had a quite large brain and determined that they were the first specie to use the tools, which means they were capable to crafting. Homo Habilis lived 2.3 to 1.6 million years ago. (Smithsonian)
  • Lucy

    Lucy is nickname for a specie called Australopithecus afarensis, that was discovered by Professor Donald Johanson and his student Tom Gray in 1974 in Hadar, Ehtiopia. Lucy is an important discovery of paleoanthropology, because it is one of the longest-lived and an early human specie discovered. The professors uncovered almost 40% of the hominid specie that is to be known to live 3.2 millon years ago. The great point is that Lucy is the earliest of fossils of homonid bipedalism. (BBC)
  • Oldest Skeleton of Human Ancestry

    Oldest Skeleton of Human Ancestry
    Scientists claim that "Ardipithecus Ramidus" or Ardi is to be known the oldest fossil that lived 4.4 million years ago and to be found by Tim White in 1994. However, scientists formally announced that the specie is the oldest fossil in 2009. The specie is the last common ancestor of the human family tree. A Scientist named Alan Walker said that Ardi are more important than Lucy, because it tells that last common ancestor didn't look like a chimp or a human (Shreeve).
  • First Tool Users?

    Scientists considered Homo Habilis the first tool users, but what changer their mind was the 2010 discovery, of older tools that were to be used by Lucy. They found two 3.4 billion years old bones to be cut and crushed by stone tools that were most likely made by Australopithecus afarensis. The imortance of the study is that, Handy Man were never the first users, but the species of Lucy were. (Than)
  • Undefined New Specie

    There were four Stone Age people found in caves of China. These species have a different mixture between ancient and modern, making them look unusual. They were named "Red Deer People" and said to live 14,500 to 11,000 years ago, making them the youngest humanoid fossils found in Asia. The species are the new story to paleoanthropology, because of their unknown identity. Scientists hypothesized that they might have migrated from Africa and there might be newer species (Waugh).