Presentation on theme: "Chapter 10 Premodern Humans. Chapter Outline When, Where and What Premodern Humans of the Middle Pleistocene A Review of Middle Pleistocene Evolution."— Presentation transcript:
Chapter 10 Premodern Humans
Chapter Outline When, Where and What Premodern Humans of the Middle Pleistocene A Review of Middle Pleistocene Evolution Middle Pleistocene Culture
Chapter Outline Neandertals: Premodern Humans of the Upper Pleistocene Culture of Neandertals Genetic Evidence Trends in Human Evolution: Understanding Premodern Humans
The Pleistocene The Pleistocene, often called the Ice Age, was marked by advances and retreats of massive continental glaciations. At least 15 major and 50 minor glacial advances have been documented in Europe. Hominids were impacted as the climate, flora, and animal life shifted. Middle Pleistocene (780,000– 25,000 y.a.) Upper Pleistocene (125,000–10,000 y.a.)
Changing Pleistocene Environments in Africa
Changing Pleistocene Environments in Eurasia Green areas show regions of likely hominid occupation. Blue areas are major glaciers. Arrows indicate likely migration routes.
Key Middle Pleistocene Premodern Human (H. heidelbergensis) Fossils from Africa SiteDates (y.a.)Human Remains Bodo (Ethiopia) Middle Pleistocene (600,000) Incomplete skull, part of braincase Broken Hill (Kabwe) (Zambia) Late Middle Pleistocene; (130,000 or older) Nearly complete cranium, cranial fragments of second individual, miscellaneous postcranial bones
Key Middle Pleistocene Premodern Human (H. heidelbergensis) Fossils from Europe SiteDates (y.a.)Human Remains Arago (Tautavel, France) 400,000– 300,000; date uncertain Face; parietal perhaps from same person; many cranial fragments; up to 23 individuals represented Atapuerca (Sima de los Huesos, northern Spain) 320,000– 190,000, probably 300,000 Minimum of 28 individuals, including some nearly complete crania
Key Middle Pleistocene Premodern Human (H. heidelbergensis) Fossils from Europe SiteDates (y.a.)Human Remains Steinheim (Germany) 300,000– 250,000; date uncertain Nearly complete skull, lacking mandible Swanscombe (England) 300,000– 250,000; date uncertain Occipital and parietals
Key Middle Pleistocene Premodern Human (H. heidelbergensis) Fossils from Asia SiteDates (y.a.)Human Remains Dali (China) Late Middle Pleistocene (230,000– 180,000) Nearly complete skull, lacking mandible. Nearly complete skull Jinniushan (China) Late Middle Pleistocene (200,000) Partial skeleton, including a cranium
Time line of Middle Pleistocene hominids.
Review of Middle Pleistocene Evolution (400,000-125,000 y.a.) Like the erects/sapiens mix in Africa and China, fossils from Europe exhibit traits from both species. Fossils from each continent differ, but the physical differences are not extraordinary. There is a definite increase in brain size and a change in the shape of the skull.
Middle Pleistocene Tools African and European archaics invented the Levallois technique for tool making. Acheulian tools are associated with hand axes. Different tool traditions coexist in some areas.
The Levallois Technique
Culture of Neandertals Neandertals, who lived in the cultural period known as the Middle Paleolithic, are almost always associated with the Mousterian industry. In the early part of the last glacial period, Mousterian culture extended across Europe and North Africa into the former Soviet Union, Israel, Iran, and as far east as Uzbekistan and perhaps even China.
Culture of Neandertals Neandertals improved on previous prepared- core techniques by inventing a new variation. They trimmed a flint nodule around the edges to form a disk-shaped core. Each time they struck the edge, they produced a flake, continuing this way until the core became too small and was discarded. They then trimmed the flakes into various forms, such as scrapers, points, and knives.
Settlements People of the Mousterian culture lived in open sites, caves, and rock shelters. Windbreaks of poles and skin were placed at the cave opening for protection against severe weather. Fire was used for cooking, warmth, light, and keeping predators at bay.
Subsistence Remains of animal bones demonstrate that Neandertals were successful hunters. Used close-proximity spears for hunting (spear thrower and bow and arrow weren’t invented until the Upper Paleolithic). Patterns of trauma in Neandertal remains match those of contemporary rodeo performers, indicating close proximity to prey.
Symbolic Behavior Prevailing consensus has been that Neandertals were capable of articulate speech. Even if Neandertals did speak, they did not have the same language capabilities of modern Homo sapiens.
Burials Neanderthals buried their dead. Their burials included grave goods like animal bones and stone tools. They placed the bodies of their dead in a flexed position.
Key Neandertal Fossil Discoveries SiteDates (y.a.)Human Remains Vindija (Croatia) 42,000– 28,000 35 specimens; cranial fragments La Chapelle (France) 50,000 Nearly complete male skeleton Shanidar (Iraq) 70,000– 60,000 9 partial skeletons Tabun (Israel) 110,000 date uncertain 2 or 3 individuals, almost complete female skeleton Krapina (Croatia) 125,000 –120,000 Up to 40 individuals, fragmentary
Cultural Contrasts: Neandertals and Upper Paleolithic Modern Humans Neandertals Upper Paleolithic Modern Humans Tool Technology Numerous flake tools; few, however, apparently for highly specialized functions; use of bone, antler, or ivory very rare; relatively few tools with more than one or two parts Many more varieties of stone tools; many apparently for specialized functions; frequent use of bone, antler, and ivory; many more tools comprised of two or more component parts
Cultural Contrasts: Neandertals and Upper Paleolithic Modern Humans Neandertals Upper Paleolithic Modern Humans Hunting Efficiency and Weapons No long-distance hunting weapons; close-proximity weapons used (thus, more likelihood of injury) Use of spear-thrower and bow and arrow; wider range of social contacts, perhaps permitting larger, more organized hunting parties (including game drives) Stone Material Transport Stone materials transported only short distances Stone tool raw materials transported over much longer distances, implying wider social networks and perhaps trade
Cultural Contrasts: Neandertals and Upper Paleolithic Modern Humans Neandertals Upper Paleolithic Modern Humans ArtArtwork uncommon; usually small; probably mostly of a personal nature; some items perhaps misinterpreted as “art”; others may be intrusive from overlying Upper Paleolithic contexts; cave art absent Artwork much more common, including transportable objects as well as elaborate cave art; well executed,using a variety of materials and techniques; stylistic sophistication
Cultural Contrasts: Neandertals and Upper Paleolithic Modern Humans Neandertals Upper Paleolithic Modern Humans BurialDeliberate burial at several sites; graves unelaborated; graves frequently lack artifacts Burials much more complex, frequently including both tools and remains of animals
Three Major Evolutionary Transitions 1. Transition from early Homo to H. erectus. Geographically limited to Africa and occurred rapidly. 2. Transition of H. erectus grading into early H. sapiens. Not geographically limited, but occurred slowly and unevenly. 3. Transition from Archaic H. sapiens to anatomically modern H. sapiens.
1. The evolution of the genus Homo over the last two million years a) can be divided into at least three major transitions. b) has been fairly steady. c) has been uniform over the different geographic regions. d) can be clearly interpreted unlike the evolution of the Australopithecines.
Answer: a The evolution of the genus Homo over the last two million years can be divided into at least three major transitions.
2. With regard to the evolution of the genus Homo, most paleoanthropologists a) agree that two or three different species of archaic sapiens existed. b) agree that all members of the genus should be lumped into one species. c) agree that Homo erectus should also be included in the species sapiens. d) have differing opinions regarding the interpretation of the fossil material.
Answer: d With regard to the evolution of the genus Homo, most paleoanthropologists have differing opinions regarding the interpretation of the fossil material.
3. Paleoanthropologists study the sudden expansion of modern Homo sapiens. One problem they have is explaining what happened to the _________________.
Answer: Neandertals Paleoanthropologists study the sudden expansion of modern Homo sapiens. One problem they have is explaining what happened to the Neandertals.
4. Neandertals used fire routinely. True False
Answer: True Neandertals used fire routinely.