Earliest evidence of humans outside Africa

Image      The Chinese and British research team were said to be

Image The Chinese and British research team were said to be"very excited about the findings

A team, led by Professor Zhaoyu Zhu of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, found a series of stone tools from the Early Pleistocene at Shangchen in the Chinese Loess Plateau.

PRIMITIVE HUMANS may have left Africa earlier than previously thought, a new discovery of ancient artefacts suggests.

The textbook narrative of human migration has long told us that we first left Africa around 1.85 million years ago.

According to this theory, this ancient hominin ancestor left Africa and settled in Asia, where it later gave rise to Homo erectus.

"This discovery implies that hominins left Africa earlier than indicated by the evidence from Dmanisi", the authors wrote in their paper, published today in the journal Nature.

Several pieces of evidence make a strong case for the researchers' interpretation and dating of these stone tools, the scientists said. The tools were nearly 1 million years old, meaning that at that time, the ancient humans already traveled to other areas on Earth. Magnetic reversal that happened between the two of 1.26 and 2.12 million years ago, revealed in stone, discovered in Sanine, the article says.

The tools were discovered in the area called Shangcheng in the southern Chinese loess plateau.

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All the artifacts show signs of use. The artifact here is a stone from which three flakes were removed. A lot of them were made of quartz and quartzite that are believed to have come from the nearby Qinling Mountains. The age of the tools "suggests that the hominins who made them were neither tall nor big-brained".

The archaeologists found eighty stone artifacts.

Some 80 artefacts were found in fossil soil that developed in a warm and wet climate. A further 16 items were found in six layers of loess that developed under colder and drier conditions. Here for the past three million years have formed the giant deposits of loess, compacted sand and clay, brought down by the waters of the yellow river. Therefore, we now believe that ancient humans occupied the Chinese Loess Plateau between 1.2 and 2.12 million years ago.

"Our discovery means it is necessary now to reconsider the timing of when early humans left Africa", said Professor Robin Dennell from the University of Exeter in the United Kingdom, who was involved in the study.

The researchers know that they will need to continue their study and find out the route the primitive humans took and at what speed they traveled to get to Asia.

These early hominins eventually moved out of Africa into unknown territories, to eventually populate the planet, Kappelman noted in a commentary that accompanied the study.

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