11.6 MB - Human Evolution and Prehistory, Second Canadian Edition

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Human Evolution
and PREHISTORY
Chapter Nine:
HOMO HEIDELBERGENSIS,
NEANDERTAL AND THE
MIDDLE PALEOLITHIC
Link to the Canadian Association for Physical Anthropology
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Chapter Preview
Who Were the Descendants of Homo
erectus/ergaster?
What Was The Culture Of Homo heidelbergensis
and Neandertals Like?
What Became Of The Neandertals?
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ARCHAIC Homo sapiens or
other species?
Middle Pleistocene, 800,000 to 120,000 ya
Fossils with mix of erectus/ergaster and sapiens cranial
traits
Clear increase in brain size
[insert illustration p. 9-3A]
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ARCHAIC Homo sapiens or
other species?
 Some anthropologists lump these fossils into archaic H. sapiens
because of the similarity to moderns; the variation is only at the
subspecies level, e.g. H. sapiens neandertalensis
 others feel that the variations represent a different species
(increasingly the majority view)
E.g. early Middle Pleistocene, Europe and Africa
Homo heidelbergensis
** the text supports the latter view
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Middle Pleistocene fossils
 An important site is Sima de Los
Huesos, Spain, close to Gran Dolina
where H. antecessor was found which
dated to 800,000 ya (chapter 8)
 Dates to 325,000 – 205,000 ya, with
significant variation in the 32
individuals
 Mix of morphological features
between erectus/ergaster and sapiens
[insert illustration p. 9-3B]
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Middle Pleistocene fossils
Africa and Europe
Period between 400,000 and 200,000 ya
Remains classified sometimes as H. sapiens and
sometimes as H. erectus/ergaster
Yet all have cranial capacities within range of
Sima de los Huesos, and all display the mosaic of
features seen in H. heidelbergensis
East Asia
same mix of traits – either H. heidelbergensis or a
new hominin species
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Levalloisian Technique
A method of flake
manufacture from a
specially prepared core
Found in Africa, Europe,
Middle East, China
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Technology
 Composite tools made by
hafting bifaces and flakes in
wood handles
 Regional styles and variation of
tools are clearly evident
 Proportion of raw materials
from distant sources increases
 In Africa, increased use of
yellow and red iron oxide (rise
in ritual activity?); common by
130,000 ya
[insert illustration p. 9-4B]
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The Neandertals
125,000 to 29,000 ya in Europe
and west Asia
Homo neandertalensis
Maternal DNA virtually absent
from modern humans
Neandertals and modern
humans began to diverge
around 500,000 ya
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Characteristics of Neandertals Crania
Modern-sized brains (higher average cranial capacity than
moderns)
Huge front teeth, used for tasks other than chewing
Large noses, to warm and moisten glacial air
Protruding eye sockets, with prominent brow ridges
Occipital bun, to counteract the heavy face
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Characteristics of Neandertals –
Postcranial Skeleton
Extremely muscular, with robust and dense
limb bones
Short limbs relative to body mass
Powerful arms with remarkably strong grip
Massive foot and leg bones
Dimensions of the pelvic outlet are fully
consistent with those of a modern woman of the
same size
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African, Chinese and Javanese
Populations
Same time period as European Neandertals
These fossils simply lack the extreme mid-face
projection and massive muscle attachments, e.g.
Solo River
Look like robust versions of earlier populations in
the same region
Fully modern-sized brains
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THE CULTURE OF
ARCHAIC HOMO SAPIENS
Middle Paleolithic Traditions
 Best known are the Mousterian and
Mousterian-like traditions of Europe, Western
Asia, North Africa
 166,000 to 40,000 years ago
 Comparable traditions are found as far east as
China and Japan where they arose
independently from local predecessors
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The Mousterian Tradition
 Characterized by
Acheulean handaxes and
flake tools made by new
Levalloisian techniques
 Great variety of tool
types, e.g. notched flakes,
gravers, borers, scrapers
 Composite tools with
hafting in bone and wood
[insert illustration p. 9-11A]
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The Mousterian Tradition
Population increase pushed people into colder
climates in Europe
In adaptation to the cold people increased their
intake of meat (animal fats)
As hunters Neandertals were opportunistic
predators as well as focusing on a particular species
Neandertals were capable of hunting large game
animals, utilizing local faunal diversity….and they
scavenged
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The Mousterian Tradition
Increase in complexity of tool kit for hunting and processing
People became less mobile as seen in the long occupations of
caves and rock shelters
People began to care for the physically disabled and the
elderly, e.g. Shanidar Cave
Culture was now more than what was needed to survive
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The Symbolic Life of Neandertals
Deliberate burial of
the dead
Europe, South
Africa, Southwest
Asia
[insert illustration p. 9-13B]
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The Symbolic Life of Neandertals
 Use of pigments, e.g.
manganese dioxide and
red ochre to apply
colour to things
 Carving and engraving
 Possible use of musical
instruments, e.g. flute
from a site in Slovenia
[insert illustration p. 9-16A]
[insert illustration p. 9-16B]
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Neandertals and Spoken Language
Shape and position of hyoid bone
was adequate for speech
The necessary neural
development had occurred
Size of hypoglossal canal is like
that of modern humans
Thoracic vertebral canal is
expanded (increased breath
control for speech)
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MODERN HUMAN ORIGINS
“The Great Debate”
Did populations of archaic Homo sapiens
simultaneously evolve from H. erectus into
modern H. sapiens (multiregional
hypothesis)?
OR
Are all contemporary people derived from
one single population of archaic Homo sapiens
(“Eve” or “Out-of-Africa” hypothesis)?
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The Multiregional Hypothesis
In Africa, China and Southeast Asia, the fossil
evidence strongly supports genetic continuity from
Homo erectus through to modern Homo sapiens
Gene flow among populations keeps the human
species unified throughout the Pleistocene; there
were no speciation events, e.g. Neandertals
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The Multiregional Hypothesis
For Europe, there is some resistance to the idea
that Neandertals were involved in the
ancestry to modern humans because of the
Aurignacian toolmaking tradition, a new
blade technology, appearing in Europe by
36,500 years ago
• Anatomically modern humans are generally
considered the makers of these tools
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The Multiregional Hypothesis
Neandertal sites are known from western
Europe dating to 35,000 to 30,000 years ago,
indicating coexistence between modern and
archaic forms of sapiens
Considering the anatomical differences, some
form of population replacement, rather than
simple evolution, may have occurred
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The Multiregional Hypothesis
An alternate to the explanation is
the idea of the “varied
population”, rather than ideal
types
In the western Europe population
between 40,000 and 30,000 years
ago, some individuals retained
stronger Neandertal heritage and
in others modern traits are more
prominent
[insert illustration p. 9-21A]
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The “Eve” or “Out-of-Africa”
Hypothesis
 Anatomically modern humans are descended from one
specific population of Homo sapiens, replacing populations
as they spread out from their original homeland
 This hypothesis comes from the use of mitochondrial DNA to
reconstruct family trees (maternal lineages)
 Preliminary results suggested that the ancestor of modern
humans lived in Africa 200,000 years ago
 Y-chromosome analysis (paternal lineages) supports the
DNA conclusions
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Fossil Evidence for the “Outof-Africa” Hypothesis
1.
Homo sapiens idaltu
(Ehtiopia), 160,000 to 154,000
years ago
2. Modern traits, e.g. domed
forehead, narrow nasal bones
3. Acheulean and Middle Stone
Age tools
4. Omo river (Ethiopia) fossils,
recently dated to 190,000 ya,
anatomically modern humans
[insert illustration p. 9-24A]
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Cultural Evidence for the
“Out-of-Africa” Hypothesis
1. oldest substantial behavioural
evidence linked to moderns is
from Africa
2. at Klasies River and Blombos
Cave, South Africa, both land
and sea resources are exploited,
70,00-80,000 ya
3. use of blade technology
[insert illustration p. 9-24B]
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Problems with the “Out-ofAfrica” Hypothesis
There is no evidence for replacement in
southwest Asia and east Asia, and strong
evidence for continuity in both the
archaeological and fossil record in East
Asia
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ORIGINAL STUDY
African Origin or Ancient Population Size Differences?
The “Eve” theory is based on the idea that the greater genetic variability
observed in Africans was a measure of a large number of mutations
accumulating over a long period of time; therefore, humans must have
evolved longer in Africa
An alternative explanation is that ancient population sizes expanded first,
and are larger, in Africa than in other regions, thereby creating greater
African variation
Larger populations lose fewer mtDNA lineages and therefore retain more
variation
Therefore, the last common ancestor will be farther in the past, and this
could be the explanation for the origin of modern humans being in Africa
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Problems With the mtDNA Analysis
1. Assumption that mutation rate is steady
2. Assumption that mtDNA is not subject to
selection
3. Assumption that DNA traveled exclusively
from Africa, and that there was no two-way
exchange
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NEXT TIME:
Homo sapiens and the
Upper Paleolithic
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