Monoliths
The Lost City
Mysterious disappearances
UFO crash in New Mexico
What killed the young pharaoh ?
Origins
Who is Behind The Murders ?
The Ghost Ship
Eustache Dauger
The Disappearance
Great Pyramid of Giza
What Secret Hides the Legendary Monument ?
Did They Really Exist ?
The Assassination of John F Kennedy
Is It Real ?
The Sinner Denigrated by the Church
The Predictions of Michel de Nostredame
The Oldest Civilization of Meso America
The Moai of Rapa Nui
The Decline of the Mayan Civilization
The Most Secret Military Zone In The World
The Prince of Darkness
The Lost City
Guardians of the Secret
Three Caravels On The Road To India
The Eternal Saga
The Fabulous Land Of Gold
The Books Written By The Gods
An Endless Quest
The Sources Of The Arcanes
Extraterrestrials Live Among Us
The Abominable Snowman
The Goat Sucker
The Conspiracy Theory
Mythology and Symbolism
And The Legend of Sherwood
Grimoire and Rituals
The Book Of Laws Of The Dead
Fallen Angels
Spiritism and Ghosts
Ghosts and Haunted Houses
Lycanthropy
Exorcism of the Demons by a Shaman Priest
Are We Alone ?
The Sixth Sense of People
A Matter of Faith ?
The Modern Prometheus
What Did It Look Like ?
The Deadly Song of the Fish Woman
City of the Cosmos
The Secret Fortune of the Abbé Saunière
The Engineer of the Future
The People of Amma
Has It Existed ?
The Legend of Sasquatch
The Greatest Political Scandal of the United States
Her Disappearance
The Gift of Foreseeing the Future
The Marks of the Christ
He Is Alive !
Are They Simply Tales ?
Who Was He ?
Voodoo and Golems - Myth ?
The Celtic's Spiritual Elite
A Monument That Defies Time
Universal Deluge
The Feeling of Already Seen
Are Black Holes Time Breaches?
The Child Who Came From None
The Lost Colony
Has She Risen ?
Mediator Between the Spiritual and Material World
The Practitioner of Yoga
Origin of Misfortunes
Emotional Forcefields
A City Dug In The Rock
The Lost Continent
A Site of Legend
The Dead Sea Scrolls
The Fury of Building
A Celestial And Sacred Place
Ayers Rock
Just a Myth ?
Dead in a Tragic Accident?
Magical City
And The Star of Bethlehem
Mysterious Explosion in Siberia
The Meaning of Dreams
The Route Without Gravity ?
500 KM of Geoglyphs
Do Stars Dictate Our Destiny ?
Where Do We Come From ?
Fiction or Reality ?
The Book That Lit The Pyres
Poisoned by Arsenic ?
Historic Reality ?
What Has Become Of The Beautiful Queen Of Egypt ?
A Kingdom Without Men
Ogre or Bluebeard ?
Who Wrote It ?
Under the Influence of Secret Societies ?
Has He Existed ?
Assassinated By His Womens ?
Serial Killer of the Eighteenth Century ?
Where is the Cemetery ?
A Premonition 14 Years in Advance
Premonitorial Signs Announced His Death ?
Apparitions Or Hallucinations ?
Where Is It ?
ADVERTISEMENT

Origin of Man - Who Are Our Ancestors ?

Origin of Man

About 25 million years ago, in the countries of East Africa, great changes are at work and will later lead to the first appearance of men. Small monkeys, distant ancestors of macaques and baboons, separates from great apes, a large family that encompasses Homo Sapiens but also gorillas, orangutans and chimpanzees.

ADVERTISEMENT

East Side Story

According to French paleontologist Yves Coppens and his theory of East Side Story proposed in 1983, a huge rift caused by a fracture of earth's crust about 8 million years ago would be responsible for the separation between the lineage of men and that of great African apes. ToumaïAncestors of great apes would've evolved west of the rift in the humid climates of the rainforest, while the first Australopithecus would've appeared in the savannahs east of the rift, hence the name East Side Story.

Discovered in Chad in 2002, the fossilized skull of a primate nicknamed Toumaï dating back 7 million years corresponds according to some paleoanthropologists to one of the first kinds of human. Two years earlier, palaeontologists also found in Kenya the fossil of a 6 million-year-old hominid named Millenium ancestor, which shows that already by that time, the first species were already beginning to stand straight and to move on two legs.

The Taung Child

The Taung Child

Around 4,2 million years ago, the first Australopithecus would have begun to flourish in South Africa as evidenced by the discovery, made in 1924 by an Australian professor named Raymond Dart, in the Taung quarry of a juvenile hominid skull which allowed him to identify, some time later, in an article published in the journal Nature, the type Australopithecus africanus. Nicknamed The Taung Child, it is considered by many to be one of the most important archaeological discoveries of the 20th century. Given the small size of its cranial box, which presupposes weak intelligence, scientists first classified Australopithecus among monkeys.

ADVERTISEMENT

Many lineages

Australopithecus

About 4 million years ago, Australopithecus would have experienced a boom and a notable diversification and there are to date eight different species of Australopithecus. Some would adopt a vegetarian diet while others would opt for a diet based on roots and tubers. One fossil in particular, that of Kenyanthropus platyops, estimated to be around 3,5 million years old, has a very flattened skull and a dentition very similar to that of human beings. He could very well be the direct ancestor of the genus Homo. Australopithecus would've definitely disappeared a million years ago.

Homo habilis

Appearance of the Homo genus

The first traces of Homo habilis, which would've been a kind of intermediate species between Australopithecus and Homo ergaster, dates back to 2,5 million years ago in South and East Africa as well as in Tanzania with Homo rudolfensis. Of very modest size, the largest were barely 5 feet tall, Homo habilis permanently moved on two legs and had superior intelligence compared to its Australopithecus predecessors. He was also able to carve tools aided by stones. Homo ergaster, a slightly more advanced type of hominid that appeared 1,6 million years ago, was much larger (1.80 m) as represented by a fossil found in Kenya near Lake Turkana. It was around this time that the Homo genus started to leave Africa's native cradle to settle on other continents.

ADVERTISEMENT

From Homo erectus to Homo sapiens

Homo erectus

Homo erectus, which settled on European and Asian continents 1,5 million years ago, is credited with discovering fire. According to some theories, Homo sapiens would begin to distinguish himself from Homo erectus around 250,000 years ago, although origins of Homo sapiens are extremely debated. Recent findings seem to suggest that the birthplace of Homo sapiens is South Africa.

Charles Darwin monkey

Darwin's theories

In his famous book published in 1859, Origin of Species, paleontologist and naturalist Charles Darwin claims that species evolve over time by a process of natural selection that he calls theory of evolution. Nature would randomly select species to act as intermediary between two other species and thus allow evolution. Applied to man, the theory of evolution would make us descendants of monkeys.

ADVERTISEMENT

A very big family

Lucy

Since the discovery of Lucy, some 3,2 million years old Australopithecus, and research undertaken by many English paleontologists, the story of the origin of man began to unfold. Today, it is considered that the Homo genus appeared 2,5 million years ago and that all genera of great African apes as well as Australopithecus and hominid forms are part of a single and large family. In other words, humans do not descend from monkeys but have common ancestors with them.

Lucy or Little Foot ?

Little Foot

Now known as a distant cousin because of her arboreal lifestyle, Lucy, a fossil of Australopithecus afarensis discovered in the Ethiopian region in 1974, is no longer considered ancestor of Homo sapiens. Little Foot, a complete and well preserved skeleton of Australopithecus, is today the best link we have to explain evolutionary relationships between great African apes and modern humans.

ADVERTISEMENT