What are some features that all Australopithecines share?
Southern Ape South and East Africa Small brains, large faces Large teeth Bipedal Reduction in brow ridge
What was the first Australopithecines?
What did we learn about Australopithecus afarensis ("Lucy")?
40% of skeleton recovered 3.5 feet tall and 60 pounds Bipedal Broad pelvis Medially angled distal femur Groove on the femur for patella Toes aligned Slightly curved fingers
First Family? What does finding multiple individuals tell us about their behavior?
Australopithecus afarensis. 13 to 17 individuals - idea of biological variation, lived in groups, sexual dimorphism
What else is Australopithecus platyops called?
What may have happened to distort the skull?
Plastic distortion- weight of the layers above a fossil can distort the original form Kenyanthropus (unusual flat face)
What had a human-like ratio of arm length to leg length?
Australopithecus ghari. Possible tool use
What had a spinal cord that was more S-like, dentition more human-like, and a wide pelvis/femur shape (bipedal?)
First Australopithecine to be discovered, 5-6 years old. Large birds were the main predators
What was Piltdown Hoax and what did it do?
Piltdown Man was a hoax in which bone fragments were presented as the fossilized remains of a previously unknown early human - caused controversy for other discoveries made around the same time
When was Australopithecus sediba discovered?
Discovered March 2009 and announced April 2010
Which Australopithecines are contenders for the ancestor to Homo?
Australopithecus garhi or Australopithecus africanus
What color is the Paranthropus aethiopicus fossil?
"The Black Skull"
Who were the Paranthropicines?
A new genus, previously believed to be australopithecus but more robust.
Most robust form - NOT Paranthropus robustus
What concepts and questions are we still working through? What are the disputes in taxonomy?
How many species were there? How large is/was the geographical distribution?
Who was the man to suggest we share a common ancestor with an orangutan?
Who went looking for the actual fossil?
Larger brain cases Smaller less prognathic faces Smaller teeth More efficient bipedal movement (habitual) Change in shape of skull
Traits for our Genus
Who discovered the first member of our Genus?
1960s Louis & Mary Leakey
Bipedal, larger CC, smaller face, possible speech capability
Homo habilis characteristics
What do researchers claim that Homo rudolfensis could be?
Homo ergaster - what dispute is there regarding ergaster and erectus?
Ergaster & erectus could be the same species
What did we learn from the remains of Turkana Boy?
80% complete skeleton, ratio of arm and leg length close to that of modern humans. Fully committed to bipedality
Who do the foot prints of Ileret belong to?
Average 900 to 1100 cc. Longer than wide, angular from the side, small/pointy sagittal keel, bar-like supraorbital torus (bony unibrow), occipital torus
Anatomical features of the Homo erectus skull & post crania
Note regarding fossils found outside of Africa...
There are slight regional differences and erectus migrated out of Africa shortly after its arrival
What is special about Bodo skull?
Ethiopia - during cleaning there were linear marks on left cheek, similar to mutilation (possible evidence of cannibalism & body mutilation)
Who are the first tool makers?
Australopithecus ghari and maybe afarensis
What are the different tool industries and what do they tell us? Oldowan
Core - raw material source from which flakes are removed Flake - stone fragment struck from a core Hammerstone technique Anvil technique
What are the different tool industries and what do they tell us? Acheulean
Bifaces (requires forethought) Hand axes - usually tear-drop in shape, with long cutting edge Cleaver - oblong with broad cutting end
What role did meat consumption have in our evolution?
Modern human lineage may have risen because of eating meat Hunting & scavenging entail different set of behavioral adaptations
What do different hypothesis say about diet and our evolution?
Hunting - attacking & killing large & dangerous game **Confrontational scavenging - wait for other predators to take down prey then steal kill (scared off predators) **Passive scavenging - snuck in to steal food
What does Richard Bryne argue a measure of intelligence should be?
Problem solving capacity - allows primates to respond effectively to new situations
What are the three different theories about the rise of intelligence? Which one is most likely?
Technical (tool use), ecological (mapping of environment), **social (deception - Fu Manchu)
What is unique about deception?
Theory of Mind - ability to place oneself into minds of others
Large cranial capacity 1350 cc High vertical forehead Small or no brow ridges Small face, small teeth
Features of present day Homo sapiens
Large continuous brow ridges Larger face Skull longer than it is wide Occipital torus No chin
Derived (more modern) features - increased brain size, more rounded cranial vault
Homo heidelbergensis cont.
They controlled fire and built shelters
Homo heidelbergensis exploited various food sources. What does that tell us?
Seasonal --> fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, bird-eggs, fish, and other marine life
Homo heidelbergensis - how do we know they hunted?
Three spears found dating 300 - 480 kya - next to the remains of horses
Homo heidelbergensis - what is the Mousterian Industry (Levallois technique)?
Levallois technique - use of a prepared core to produce uniform flakes
Neanderthals - what parts of the world are they found in?
Found in Europe, Middle East, and parts of Asia - climate in these areas were really cold
Neanderthals - what is their cranial capacity?
1300 cc - 1600 cc **Homo sapiens did not have the largest brains
Large cranial capacity reflects larger body size - adaptation to the cold
Neanderthals - what is their morphology? In which ways are they adapted for the cold?
Mid-facial prognathism (extending out of the face), occipital bun, brow-ridge
Neanderthals - what tool industries were used? Heavy meat diet?
Mousterian Industry. Chemical analysis of bones shows a heavily meat-reliant diet
What evidence do we have regarding Neanderthal speech?
Thought that they would have made guttural, baby like sounds No soft tissue Hyoid bone as firm evidence for speech capability
Neanderthals - what do we know from the Old Man of La-Chappelle?
Neanderthals healed from serious injuries and cared for the injured or elderly
Neanderthals - burial of their dead? Why?
Buried to get rid of the smell and disease - bodies in fetal position
Scrape marks on bones are evidence of butchery
Neanderthals - lumpers? Splitters?
Lumpers - think all archaic homo were regional variations (heidelbergensis Neanderthal, some erectus)
Splitters - think heidelbergensis and Neanderthal are distinct species
How long ago did our species start?
Where are the first remains found? What are they called?
Herto, Ethiopia. Homo sapien idalta
Are we related to Neanderthals?
mDNA shows no similarities between Neanderthals and modern humans
Nuclear DNA shows 1-4% similarities
Everyone agrees that Homo erectus (ergaster) migrated out of Africa but what happened next...
African Replacement Model - Homo sapiens replace and cause the extinction of other species
**Assimilation Model - encounters other species and assimilates
Multi-regional Evolutionary Model - Homo sapiens evolved at all locations at the same time
What new materials are used (art)?
Bone & antler. Clothing & tents made easier
Slender & razor sharp Twice as long as wide Refined precision --> punch & pressure flaking
Small, flaked stone tools probably designed to be hafted to wood or bone - common feature of Upper Paleolithic tool industries. Spears or harpoons
What are the two types of art? What hypothesis are about cave paintings?
Mural art - first evidence of representational art --> cave art
Portable art - Venus figurines, carved tools
What do burials tell us?
Thoughts of an afterlife?
When and where did agriculture start, and where did it "spread" to?
Starts in fertile crescent (Middle East)
Near East fertile crescent (wheat) 2 in Asia - South and North China (wheat) Sub-Saharan Africa (rice, millet) 3 in the Americas - Eastern North America/United States (corn), Central Mexico (squash), South Central Andes (potato)
What were the first animals and plants to be domesticated?
Animals: dogs Plans: wild grains
Natural habitat hypothesis
Earliest domesticates should appear where their wild ancestors lived
A circumstance in which plants, animals, and humans would have clustered in confined areas near water
Increasing populations required people to get more food. The best solution was domestication
Based on the argument that the transition to farming, food storage, and surplus could not be understood simply in terms of environment and population
What are the benefits of agriculture?
Allowed for population growth Formed the foundation of complex societies: Rise of cities Art Literature New technologies Where we are today
What are the drawbacks of agriculture?
Population growth --> increased violence
People became more sedentary --> suitable for pathogens to flourish, malnutrition
Biological changes --> less demand for chewing, light use of muscle limits bone growth, bad teeth, osteoarthritis
Set on the West Bank Jordan River is the oldest known city, has a 70 ft tell, a large stone tower, wall, and ditch appear to have encircled the site
What do we know when children are buried with grave goods?
Children buried with goods show the inheritance of socioeconomic status