Early humans things to Know



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EARLY HUMANS


Things to Know

  • BCE (Before Common Era) Pre-year 1

  • CE (Common Era). Year 1-2006.

  • Hominids- Prehistoric humans

  • Bipedal- two footed animal

  • We will focus on primarily 5 hominids. Keep in mind that more than 5 types have been identified.



Australopithecus

  • Dates: 4 million- 3 million years ago.

  • Appearance:

  • “Lucy” was 3 feet, 6 inches tall.

  • Hands, feet and legs like humans, except for long toes and fingers like an ape.

  • Hair, nose, skin pigment- up to interprertation.

  • http://www.archaeologyinfo.com/australopithecusafarensis.htm

  • wikipedia



Australopithecus

  • Discovery: Mary Leakey discovered footprints at Laetoli in Tanzania, East Africa. Significant because of shape.

  • 1974- Lucy found by Donald Johanson. Leg angle from pelvis- different: bi pedal. Why? Vegetation? High grass?

  • 1992- Skull; 1/3 size of humans.



Australopithecus

  • Daily Life

  • All interpretation. Obtained food by using small branches or stones to kill prey. Ate berries, leaves, fruit, roots, eggs and insects, worms, lizards- easy to chew.

  • Small nomadic groups.

  • Rest of chart: None or unknown.



Homo habilis

  • “Handy man”

  • Dates: 1.5-2 million years ago. Discovered by the Leakeys at Olduvai Gorge in east Africa.

  • Appearance: 4 ½ feet tall. Walked upright; rounded skull, small face and teeth. Brain half the size of modern human.

  • http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/homs/stw53.jpg

  • Archaeology.info



Homo habilis

  • Shelter: Simple huts made from branches and stones. Dome shaped.

  • Daily Life: Food- used tools to cut meat and smash bones for marrow. Ate plants. Organized hunts without weapons. Planned ahead.



Homo habilis

  • Tools- Simple tools from stone (hand axe)

  • Language- Primative form: gestures and sounds.

  • All other categories: None or unknown.



Homo ergaster

  • “Work man”

  • 1975 fossil found in Kenya by Leakey team.

  • First appeared 1.9 million years ago. This means they existed with Lucy.

  • Less ape like. Long limbs, upright, slim waist. Almost 6 feet tall. http://anthro.palomar.edu/homo/homo_2.htm



Homo erectus

  • “Upright man”

  • 1,500,000-250,000 years ago in Africa, Asia, Europe. (1st to migrate out of Africa.)

  • Appearance: Taller than habilis. Prominent single bow ridge above the eyes. Thick lower skull, angled in back. Protruding jaw. Strong. (wikipedia)



Homo erectus

  • Discovered in 1890 by Dutch physician Eugene Dubois on the island of Java. Java Man, Peking Man and Turkana Boy are famous finds.

  • Daily Life: Lived w/20-30 members. Made huts with fire hearths.



Homo erectus

  • Food: Followed animals; group hunting to kill large animals.

  • Tools: bolas for hunting, hand axes

  • Fire: First to use (cook, hunt, protect, create tools and warmth)

  • Terra Amata- each spring, followed herds of animals and feasted with other clans.

  • Language- Grunts and simple words with gestures.

  • Clothing: Draped animal skins.



Neanderthal

  • “Wiseman” term for homo sapiens- found in Neander Valley in 1856. Eurasian. Appearance: Short and stocky with large muscles. Arthritis led to stooping figures. Good for cold weather. Lot of wear on teeth; their third hand. http://www.colinmayne.com/neanderthal.html



Neanderthal

  • Daily Life: Shelter- More advanced: skins and bones to protect from weather, although most preferred caves. Men hunted, women stayed at home.

  • Food- Organized group hunts to confuse prey. Holes in ground for refrigeration.

  • Language- How advanced is debated.

  • Tools- Different tools for different purposes (knives, spears,scrapers). They had large brains.



Neanderthals

  • Fire- Made fire with sticks or stones.

  • Rituals- Buried their dead, perhaps even with some formal ceremony. The Neanderthals worked together in a community, even cared for their sick-cared for broken bones.

  • Clothing- Punched holes in hides and tied together. 1st to do this. http://www.realhistoryww.com/world_history/ancient/Homo_habilis_erectus_neanderthal.htm



Homo Sapiens Sapiens

  • Term means “Doubly Wiseman”.

  • 35,000-12,000 BCE.

  • Originated in Africa and spread to Europe (Cro-Magnon), Asia and Australia and eventually to North and South America. A lot of this travel occurred during the ice age. Land bridges allowed the passage from one spot to another (Bering Strait). http://www.realhistoryww.com/world_history/ancient/cro_magnon_Homo_sapien.htm



Homo sapiens sapiens





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