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Latest African archaeology Stories

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2009-02-04 12:15:00

The facial structure of an ancient relative of modern humans may have evolved to allow them to eat large, hard nuts and seeds as part of a survival strategy, according to a new study by an international team of researchers that includes Florida State University's Dennis E. Slice. The findings, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, challenge a long-standing hypothesis that the distinctive facial skeleton of Australopithecus africanus, a human relative who...

2009-02-03 23:38:09

A U.S. researcher says the facial structure of our early human ancestors appear to have evolved to allow them to eat large, hard nuts to survive. Dennis Slice of Florida State University said the findings, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, challenge the hypothesis that the facial skeleton of Australopithecus africanus was developed for feeding on small objects. The face of the early human relative, who lived in Africa more than 2 million years ago, had...

2009-02-03 09:30:00

Computer simulation shows early humans had jaws to eat diet of hard seeds and nutsYour mother always told you not to use your teeth as tools to open something hard, and she was right. Human skulls have small faces and teeth and are not well-equipped to bite down forcefully on hard objects. Not so of our earliest ancestors, say scientists. New research published in the February 2009 issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences reveals nut-cracking abilities in our...

2008-08-15 09:00:24

By John Noble Wilford New York Times News Service When Paul C. Sereno went hunting dinosaur bones in the Sahara, his career took a sharp turn from paleontology to archaeology. The expedition found what has proved to be the largest known graveyard of Stone Age people who lived there when the desert was green. The first traces of pottery, stone tools and human skeletons were discovered eight years ago at a site in the southern Sahara in Niger. After preliminary research, Sereno, a...

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2008-08-14 14:25:00

Researchers have uncovered the remains of a woman and two children in an ancient cemetery located in what is now the Sahara Desert. When they came across their skeletons, researchers found that the arms of the children were still extended to the woman in perpetual embrace in a cemetery that is providing an unprecedented view of how two civilizations lived there. Paul Sereno of the University of Chicago and his colleagues came across the skeletons while searching for the remains of dinosaurs...

2008-04-30 16:39:41

An early human with a big mouth made for chomping strangely preferred to eat soft, squishy fruits, new dental analyses suggest. The finding - the big guy's teeth showed only light wear - might force scientists to downgrade everything they thought they knew about hominids' diets. For starters, the findings could cause this hominid, Paranthropus boisei, to relinquish rights to its long-held moniker, the Nutcracker Man, in the eyes of anthropologists. The Nutcracker Man lived from...

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2008-04-30 11:00:00

Human ancestor's teeth yields new cluesTiny marks on the teeth of an ancient human ancestor known as the "Nutcracker Man" may upset current evolutionary understanding of early hominid diet.Using high-powered microscopes, researchers looked at rough geometric shapes on the teeth of several Nutcracker Man specimens and determined that their structure alone was not enough to predict diet.Peter Ungar, professor of anthropology at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, contends the finding...

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2005-08-08 17:10:00

Using a powerful microscope and computer software, a team of scientists from Johns Hopkins, the University of Arkansas, Worcester Polytechnic Institute and elsewhere has developed a faster and more objective way to examine the surfaces of fossilized teeth, a practice used to figure out the diets of our early ancestors. By comparing teeth from two species of early humans, Australopithecus africanus and Paranthropus robustus, the researchers confirm previous evidence that A. africanus ate more...

2005-08-04 17:37:01

A Penn State researcher is part of the team that developed techniques that have generated insights into dietary divergences between some of our human ancestors, allowing scientists to better understand the evolutionary path that led to the modern-day diets that humans consume. "Our new techniques are allowing us to get beyond simple dichotomies and helping us understand the processes by which dietary evolution is working," said Peter Ungar, professor of anthropology at the University of...

2004-11-28 03:00:22

Acheulean Culture in Peninsular India: An Ecological Perspective. Raghunath S. Pappu. New Delhi: D. K. Printworld, 2001. 455 rupees. ISBN 81-246-0168-2. In the Foreword of tins book, India's venerable prehistoric archaeologist, V. N. Misra, states (p. v) that, "Palaeolithic studies in India have made ... tremendous progress during the last four decades/' although he opines that an understanding of human evolution and behavior from the record is still "fragmentary" and "incomplete." In an...


Latest African archaeology Reference Libraries

Australopithecus garhi
2013-11-29 11:38:51

Australopithecus garhi is a gracile australopithecine species whose fossils were discovered in 1996 by a research team led by Ethiopian paleontologist Berhane Asfaw ad Tim White, an American paleontologist. The remains are believed to be a human ancestor species and most likely the direct ancestor to the human genus Homo. Tim White was the scientist to find the first of the key A. garhi fossils in 1996 within the Bouri Formation found in the Middle Awash of Ethiopia’s Afar Depression....

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Word of the Day
vermicular
  • Like a worm in form or movement; vermiform; tortuous or sinuous; also, writhing or wriggling.
  • Like the track or trace of a worm; appearing as if worm-eaten; vermiculate.
  • Marked with fine, close-set, wavy or tortuous lines of color; vermiculated.
  • A form of rusticated masonry which is so wrought as to appear thickly indented with worm-tracks.
This word ultimately comes from the Latin 'vermis,' worm.
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