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Articles on Hominins

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The Grotte Mandrin rock shelter saw repeated use by Neanderthals and modern humans over millennia. Ludovic Slimak

New research suggests modern humans lived in Europe 10,000 years earlier than previously thought, in Neanderthal territories

Stone artifacts and a fossil tooth point to Homo sapiens living at Grotte Mandrin 54,000 years ago, at a time when Neanderthals were still living in Europe.
Eleanor Scerri

Research reveals humans ventured out of Africa repeatedly as early as 400,000 years ago, to visit the rolling grasslands of Arabia

The new work presents the oldest dated evidence for hominins in Arabia, in the form of an ancient handaxe tool uncovered from the Nefud Desert.
A Homo erectus skull from Java, Indonesia. This pioneering species stands at the root of a fascinating evolutionary tree. Scimex

Evolutionary study suggests prehistoric human fossils ‘hiding in plain sight’ in Southeast Asia

The ancestors of modern-day people living on Southeast Asian islands likely interbred with a prehistoric species called Denisovans - raising the possibility of fresh and intriguing fossil discoveries.
Footprints, preserved in solidified ash, hint at human behavior from as long as 19,000 years ago. Cynthia Liutkus-Pierce

Prehistoric human footprints reveal a rare snapshot of ancient human group behavior

The footprints of over 20 different prehistoric people, pressed into volcanic ash thousands of years ago in Tanzania, show possible evidence for sexual division of labor in this ancient community.
20 years ago, who could predict how much more researchers would know today about the human past – let alone what they could learn from a thimble of dirt, a scrape of dental plaque, or satellites in space. Manuel Domínguez-Rodrigo

Archaeological discoveries are happening faster than ever before, helping refine the human story

20 years ago, who could predict how much more researchers would know today about the human past – let alone what they could learn from a thimble of dirt, a scrape of dental plaque, or satellites in space.
A rock surface containing a circular pattern with a central depression. The scale bar = 10 cm. Images modified from: Helm, C.W.; Cawthra, H.C.; De Vynck, J.C.; Helm, C.J.; Rust, R.; Stear. W. Patterns in the Sand: A Pleistocene hominin signature along the South African coastline? Proceedings of the Geologists’ Association (2019)

Ancient humans may have made patterns and sculptures on South Africa’s beaches

Given that we know humans moved across these landscapes, we wondered whether there might also be evidence of other forms of human activity on these surfaces of sand.
Richard ‘Bert’ Roberts, Vladimir Uliyanov and Maxim Kozlikin (clockwise from top) examining sediments in the East Chamber of Denisova Cave. Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Author provided

Fresh clues to the life and times of the Denisovans, a little-known ancient group of humans

New studies reveal when the Denisovans and their Neanderthal cousins occupied a cave in southern Siberia. It’s the only site known to have been inhabited by them and by modern humans.
Fossilized teeth from a modern human who lived in Israel close to 200,000 years ago. Israel Hershkovitz, Tel Aviv University

Fossil jawbone from Israel is the oldest modern human found outside Africa

New discoveries are changing archaeologists’ ideas about the origins of our own species and our migration out of Africa. This fossil pushes Homo sapiens’ African exodus date back by 50,000 years.

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