Tag: homininsPage 1 of 2

A Reader’s Question About Surviving the Ice Age

Marlaina Martin , August 24th, 2022

An anthropologist describes the multiple ice ages of the Earth’s past and how our species survived the most recent one. This article was originally published at The Conversation…


The Problems of Evolution as a “March of Progress”

Keridwen Cornelius , August 16th, 2022

The idea that evolution is a hierarchy of complexity with humans on top lurks in everything from biology classes to politics. It’s time to unlearn this false and…


Did Neanderthals Make Art?

Keridwen Cornelius , August 11th, 2022

Experts continue to debate whether Neanderthals were painters and jewelry-makers. A paleoanthropologist explores the evidence for Neanderthal art and the sources of people’s skepticism. ✽ As a Neande…


What the Discovery of Denisovan Remains in Laos Means

Kira Westaway, Mike W. Morley, and Renaud Joannes-Boyau , June 7th, 2022

The Tam Ngu Hao 2 Cave in Laos held Denisovan remains—the first ever found in Southeast Asia, showing the expansive geographical reach of this hominin species. Fabrice Demeter/University…


Five Turning Points in the Evolution of Wine

Christopher Howard , May 31st, 2022

Archaeologists have investigated Greek wine containers shipwrecked in the Mediterranean. Cristian Umili/Mondadori Portfolio/Getty Images Contrary to popular belief, the evolution of wine …


The Deep Human Story of Collecting Fossils

Sara Toth Stub , May 24th, 2022

The Greek myth of Odysseus and the one-eyed Cyclops may have been inspired by ancient mammoth and mastodon skulls, on which the opening for the trunk looks like…


What Ancient DNA Reveals About Life in Africa 20,000 Years Ago

Elizabeth Sawchuk, Jessica Thompson, and Mary Prendergast , April 12th, 2022

Kondoa Irangi rock art in present-day Tanzania features the cultural expressions of hunter-gatherers and pastoralists over a 2,000-year span. Nina R/Wikimedia Commons This article was ori…


Meet the Ancient Technologists Who Changed Everything

Nicholas R. Longrich , January 14th, 2022

The idea of crafting and using beads as ornamentation may have spread from North Africa outward to other parts of the African continent and to Europe. Nicholas R….


My Tribute to Richard Leakey

Bernard Wood , January 10th, 2022

Richard Leakey and his teams’ fossil discoveries profoundly shaped our knowledge of human origins. Keith Beaty/Toronto Star/Getty Images On January 2, paleoanthropologist Richard Leakey d…


The Humans We Haven’t Met Yet

Jeffrey H. Schwartz , December 2nd, 2021

At the Sima de los Huesos (“Pit of the Bones”) archaeological site in Spain, researchers recovered DNA from 417,000-year-old hominin fossils that may be the ancestors of Neanderthals….


The Blockbuster Exhibit That Shouldn’t Have Been

Stephen E. Nash , November 30th, 2021

Museum professionals often point to the 1972 to 1981 Treasures of Tutankhamun tour as the beginning of the blockbuster exhibit era, in which museums host exhibitions that appeal…


How Human Are We?

Nicholas R. Longrich , November 10th, 2021

Hand axes crafted by Homo erectus required skills and planning—and likely, generational knowledge. Nick Longrich This article was originally published at The Conversation and has been rep…


What Drove Homo Erectus Out of Africa?

Josie Glausiusz , October 14th, 2021

The ‘Ubeidiya site today is an expanse of grasses. Concealed from this view are slabs of fossilized pebbly clay, a source of ancient finds that have helped scholars…


Five Human Species You May Not Know About

Anna Goldfield , September 22nd, 2021

We’re so used to the idea of being the only people around that it seems outlandish to think that not so long ago in our evolutionary history, multiple…


Is Homo longi an Extinct Human Species?

Anthony Sinclair , August 4th, 2021

[no-caption] Chuang Zhao This article was originally published at The Conversation and has been republished under Creative Commons. In 1933, a mysterious fossil skull was discovered near …


Five Ways Humans Evolved to be Athletes

Anna Goldfield , July 21st, 2021

The coming Olympics will showcase some of the most extraordinary human feats of strength, speed, and agility. As an archaeologist who focuses on the development of the human…


How Apes Reveal Human History

Mary Shirley Mitchell , June 24th, 2021

Except for humans, every great ape is endangered—many at great risk of going extinct. There are fewer than 300,000 chimpanzees living in the wild. USAID Africa Bureau/Wikimedia Commons…


Mapping Human and Neanderthal Genomes

Anna Goldfield , February 15th, 2021

Back in 1990, researchers embarked on an epic project to map out all of human DNA: the Human Genome Project. Their first draft of the human genome was…


Evolutionary Foodprints

Chelsea Horton , January 13th, 2021

*This essay includes a photograph of a replica Paranthropus boisei skull and a replica human skull. New approaches to the dental remains of early hominins and the diets…

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Climate Change May Have Been a Major Driver of Ancient Hominin Extinctions

Deepa Padmanaban , November 6th, 2020

New research suggests some of our species’ closest relatives died out because of significant changes in climate, findings that may offer a warning for humanity today. Aliraza Khatri/Getty…


Early Humans Controlled Fire to Make Stone Tools

Mohammed El-Said , October 15th, 2020

Researchers found these ancient flint blades in Israel’s Qesem Cave. Filipe Natalio Humanity’s creation and mastery of fire likely came in stages. Being able to reliably kindle this…


Imagining the Neanderthal’s World

Julia M. Klein , September 24th, 2020

[no-caption] Denis Pobytov Kindred: Neanderthal Life, Love, Death, and Art by Rebecca Wragg Sykes. Bloomsbury Sigma, August (U.K.) & October (U.S.) 2020. Archaeology and genomics k…


A Spark of Insight Into Neanderthal Behavior

Anna Goldfield , June 22nd, 2020

In 2017, Naomi Martisius, now a postdoctoral researcher with the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, was sitting in a conference session when she had an…


How Elders Make Us Human

Jayur Madhusudan Mehta , June 12th, 2020

[no-caption] Matthias Zomer/Pexels On March 23, Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick sparked controversy and outrage by suggesting that older people in the United States might be willing to…