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A: Border Cave’s 200,000 year old fossilised grass fragments. B: The profile section of desiccated grass bedding dating to around 43,000 years ago. Both images copyright Lyn Wadley

Grass on ash: uncovering 200,000 year old beds from South Africa

Before 200,000 years ago, close to the origin of our species, people preferred the use of broad-leaved grasses to build their beds and resting areas using ash layers underneath.
The bone arrowhead (insert) found at Klasies River main site has much to teach us. Justin Bradfield and Sarah Wurz

What a bone arrowhead from South Africa reveals about ancient human cognition

The artefact comes from deposits dated to more than 60,000 years ago. It closely resembles thousands of bone arrowheads used by the indigenous San hunter-gatherers from the 18th to the 20th centuries.
The ~2 Ma Homo erectus cranium, DNH 134, from the Drimolen Fossil Hominin site. Matthew V. Caruana

Fossil find suggests Homo erectus emerged 200,000 years earlier than thought

This is a hugely important find. It means that one of our earlier ancestors possibly originated in southern Africa.
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.

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