Homo sapiens

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They Buried Their Dead 100K Years Before Homo Sapiens

Researchers describe cognitive complexity of Homo naledi, though skeptics remain

(Newser) - Just two hominin species are thought to have intentionally buried their dead: Neanderthals and modern humans. That idea has been floundering over the last decade, however, with the discovery of Homo naledi , an archaic human species that appears to have buried its dead deep inside South Africa's Rising Star...

'Neanderthal Pompeii' Upends Theories on Replacement by Humans
Cave Find 'Literally Rewrites
All Our Books of History'
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Cave Find 'Literally Rewrites All Our Books of History'

Site repeatedly changed hands between Neanderthals, Homo sapiens

(Newser) - A cave in southern France that one researcher calls a Neanderthal Pompeii has upended theories about how our species replaced the earlier hominid species in Europe tens of thousands of years ago. Scientists had thought Homo sapiens arrived in western Europe around 40,000 and quickly wiped out the Neanderthals,...

They Ran Out of Big Game to Hunt. Then Their Brains Swelled

Researchers say shift to hunting smaller game caused early humans' brains to nearly triple in size

(Newser) - In hunting large mammals to near extinction, early modern humans may have prompted an explosion in brain size—in a good way. Humans emerged as big-game hunters in Africa 2.6 million years ago but would ultimately see large animals dwindle as a result of hunting practices, according to Miki...

Discovery Alters Notions About Early Humans' Travel
Discovery Alters Notions
About Early Humans' Travel
new study

Discovery Alters Notions About Early Humans' Travel

It appears they reached Europe earlier than thought, hung out with Neanderthals

(Newser) - Human bones from a Bulgarian cave suggest our species arrived in Europe thousands of years earlier than previously thought and shared the continent longer than realized with Neanderthals, per the AP . Scientists found four bone fragments and a tooth that detailed radiocarbon and DNA tests show are from four Homo...

Scientists Find Clues of 'Ghost' Human Ancestor
Evidence of a 'Ghost' Human
Ancestor Revealed in DNA
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Evidence of a 'Ghost' Human Ancestor Revealed in DNA

Researchers say unknown archaic population mated with homo sapiens

(Newser) - Scientists already know that early humans mated with Neanderthals and Denisovans, distant relatives on the family tree. Now a new study suggests that another such group existed, one that has yet to be identified, reports the Guardian . In their study in the journal Science Advances , researchers say they found evidence...

Cave Bones Make Things a 'Lot More Interesting'
Human Cousin Found
in Remote Cave

Human Cousin Found in Remote Cave

Fossils of a long-lost human relative found in the Philippines

(Newser) - Fossil bones and teeth found in the Philippines have revealed a long-lost cousin of modern people, which evidently lived around the time our own species was spreading from Africa to occupy the rest of the world, the AP reports. It's yet another reminder that, although Homo sapiens is now...

In Collapsed Cave, Remarkably Old Human Fossil Discovered

2002 find suggests modern humans may have left Africa 100K years earlier than thought

(Newser) - A fossil found in Israel indicates modern humans may have left Africa as much as 100,000 years earlier than previously thought. Scientists say that an ancient upper jawbone and associated stone tools could also mean that Homo sapiens—modern humans—arose in Africa far earlier than fossils now show....

New Fossils Push Known Human History Back 100K Years

And change what we thought we knew about human history and evolution

(Newser) - “My reaction was a big ‘wow,'” archaeologist Jean-Jacques Hublin tells the Guardian . Hublin and his team recently discovered Homo sapien fossils in an old mine in Morocco that dating tests reveal are 300,000 years old. Prior to the discovery, the earliest known Homo sapien fossils...

'Healthiest Dead Things You'll Ever See' Found in S. Africa
Bones Found in 2nd Chamber
of Cave Spur Huge Questions
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Bones Found in 2nd Chamber of Cave Spur Huge Questions

More bones unearthed from H. naledi species, upending evolution beliefs

(Newser) - In 2015 it was a discovery described as "unlike anything we have seen." Now even more so. A second chamber in a South African cave system has produced bones belonging to Homo naledi, a species scientists now believe may have existed around the same time as Homo sapiens...

Humans May Have Lived in California 130K Years Ago
Mastodon Bones Spark
Major Claim—and Major Doubt

Mastodon Bones Spark Major Claim—and Major Doubt

Did humans live in California 130K years ago?

(Newser) - Exactly how long have humans been in the Americas? A wealth of evidence suggests they arrived as early as 20,000 years ago, while the earliest record of modern humans in the world dates back 200,000 years to Africa (and they probably didn't leave until around 50,000...

Ancients' Skulls Pose a Puzzle for Our Family Tree

They're not quite Neanderthal and not quite Homo sapien

(Newser) - First, back in 2007, they found tools. Then, a bone. Now archaeologists who've continued to return to the same dig in Lingjing, China, report in the journal Science that they've unearthed more than 40 separate skull fragments to pull together two partial skulls that date back 100,000...

Feeling Kind of Blue? Blame the Neanderthal In You

Neanderthal genetic variants are strongly linked to a dozen traits

(Newser) - It's long been known that the predecessors of modern humans and Neanderthals lived side by side, but it wasn't until 2010 that it was discovered the two species interbred . In fact, as much as 4% of the DNA of modern humans with European or Asian ancestry comes from...

Jawbone Lifts Lid on Human-Neanderthal Sex

Shows interbreeding occurred in Europe 37K to 42K years ago

(Newser) - A jawbone found in Romania more than a decade ago provides the first genetic evidence that humans and Neanderthals knocked boots in Europe before the latter disappeared between 35,000 and 40,000 years ago. Scientists who came across the bone of one of the earliest modern humans in Europe...

Ancient Zigzag Means First Artist Wasn't Exactly Human

Scratches on shell pre-date Homo sapiens

(Newser) - A human ancestor carved a zigzag onto the shell of a mussel some 430,000 years ago. Now that shell, recovered from a riverbank in Indonesia in 1891, could alter our understanding of what it means to be human. Artistic creativity has long been considered unique to Homo sapiens: Before...

Thigh Bone Reveals Timing of Human-Neanderthal Sex

We were probably getting it on between 50K and 60K years ago

(Newser) - It's no surprise that modern humans and Neanderthals used to get it on —most people of Eurasian descent are, genetically, 1.6% to 2.1% Neanderthal. The question has long been when they did, with a wide estimate putting it between 37,000 and 86,000 years ago...

Neanderthals May Have Died Out 10K Years Earlier Than We Thought

Scientists used sophisticated radiocarbon dating to make the new estimation

(Newser) - Scholars have long wondered why Neanderthals disappeared—and exactly when. Recent estimates date their last days to 30,000 years ago, but a new take using sophisticated radiocarbon dating suggests their rapid decline actually happened between 40,000 and 45,000 years ago. Based on this timing, the findings also...

Skull Shapes 'Feminized' About 50K Years Ago

Smaller brows, less testosterone helped us advance: study

(Newser) - Hope you're sitting down, gentlemen: A new study says that homo sapiens made a huge leap in abstract and symbolic thought 50,000 years ago because their skull-shape "feminized" and testosterone levels went down, Pacific Standard reports. Experts at Duke University analyzed over 1,400 modern and ancient...

'Hobbit' Found Decade Ago Not New Species

The skull appears to belong to an individual with Down Syndrome

(Newser) - When a skull and several bone fragments were discovered in a cave on the Indonesian island of Flores in 2004, one scientist called it "the most important find in human evolution for 100 years." The discoverers hailed it as a previously unknown and extinct human species, which they...

Tibetans' Genetic Edge Didn't Come From Homo Sapiens

High-altitude fitness hails from an extinct hominid cousin, the Denisovans

(Newser) - Tibetans are largely unique among humans for their ability to live comfortably at high altitudes. The Tibetan Plateau, nicknamed the "roof of the world," stands an average of 15,000 feet above sea level. That's just shy of 3 miles—making it the highest plateau on the...

Stone Spears Arrived Earlier Than Thought

Congratulations, homo heidelbergensis

(Newser) - Our ancestors figured out how make stone-tipped spears about half a million years ago, significantly earlier than thought, reports Scientific American . Artifacts found in South Africa push back their arrival 200,000 years and suggest they predated Neanderthals. It now appears that a species named homo heidelbergensis gets the credit.

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