Homo erectus was in Eurasia 1.8 million years ago

(Note: the claims about the discovery, published in The Independent, are questionable. See update below. Also see Matthew H.’s summary of a fraudulent discovery about ten years ago of life on Mars.)

Several primitive Homo erectus skulls have been found in Georgia that are 1.8 million years old, making them the oldest indisputable hominid remains discovered outside Africa. Since it is believed that Homo erectus migrated out of Africa about a million years ago, and since these skulls are notably more primitive than most Homo erectus skulls, with only 60 percent of the cranial capacity, the finding is being presented as proof that Homo erectus originated in Eurasia, not Africa as the long-established conventional view tells us. However, I wouldn’t advise you to hold your breath waiting for a Newsweek cover proclaiming the discovery of “Caucasian Eve!”

By the way, on the same page of The Independent where the article appears, there is an ad for “Best Sex Toys!” Right there in the middle of a regular newspaper.

Caucasian man has hit bottom. Maybe we should go back to the Homo erectus stage and start all over again.

Update: There is contradictory information about Homo erectus. One Wikipedia article tells us that Homo erectus appeared in Africa 1.8 million years ago, which is the figure I remember. However, another Wikipedia article says that Homo erectus and his close relative Homo ergaster began to migrate out of Africa two million years ago. Further, the migration out of Africa is thought to have started almost as soon as Homo erectus appeared in Africa:

Early members of the Homo genus, i.e. Homo ergaster, Homo erectus and Homo heidelbergensis migrated from Africa during the Early Pleistocene, possibly as a result of the operation of the Saharan pump, around 1.9 million years ago, and dispersed throughout most of the Old World, reaching as far as Southeast Asia. The date of original dispersal beyond Africa virtually coincides with the appearance of Homo ergaster in the fossil record … [emphasis added.]

The article continues:

Key sites for this early migration out of Africa are Riwat in Pakistan (1.9 Mya), Ubeidiya in the Levant (1.5 Mya) and Dmanisi in the Caucasus (1.7 Mya).

So the discovery of 1.8 million year old Homo erectus remains in Georgia is not necessarily the paradigm changing news it is being presented as. The article’s claim that Homo erectus began migrating out of Africa one million years ago is only off by a million years. I guess we should not expect much of the paper that publishes Robert Fisk.

- end of initial entry -

Brandon F. writes:

“Caucasian man has hit bottom. Maybe we should go back to the Homo erectus stage and start all over again.”

Great line.

Matthew H. writes:

The latest Earth-shattering bombshell from the world of science, the discovery of the early Homo erectus skull in West Asia, reminds me of another such amazing discovery from about ten years ago, that of “Life on Mars.”

Here is how it played out as I recall:

1. Blaring trumpets, screaming headlines: “LIFE DISCOVERED ON MARS!!!!”

2. Well, fossil evidence of life on Mars.

3. That is, evidence of something sort of bacteria-like on a Mars rock.

4. See, little indentations that look a lot like what the fossil of a bacteria might look like, found on a Mars rock.

5. Oh, the rock was actually found on Earth but we think it came from Mars originally.

6. Piff! (A small puff of smoke, story disappears)

It seems the definition of science is somewhat different from what I have always thought. It seems to be: Find fossilized remains, or what appear to be fossilized remains, invent the most fabulous possible narrative to “explain” their existence, make a media splash, then apply for more funding.

Much of modern science is reminiscent of the medieval trade in relics of the saints: Put some bone shards together with a story and soon the patrons and the pilgrims come knocking (with their money).

Posted by Lawrence Auster at September 09, 2009 11:07 AM | Send

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