Bewildering diversity of Homo erectus
The forerunner of Homo sapiens astounds with its inconsistency. New facts broaden the picture of this early human - and blur the conventional definition of the species.
No doubt: Homo erectus has the undisputed pioneer role in our ancestry. He was the first hominin to resemble modern man in body size and proportions, and the first to go from hunted to hunter on the savannah. And he was probably the first to use fire.
That's not all. According to finds, Homo erectus (from the Latin erectus=erected) is the earliest hominin to have spread from Africa to Eurasia. Paleoanthropologists call the scenario of this first expansion from the cradle of humanity Out-of-Africa I. It appears to have taken place fairly quickly after Homo erectus appeared on the world stage: two million years "Image" is the earliest fossil to date, a child skull with catalog number DNH 134. Paleoanthropologist Andy Herries found it a few years ago discovered in the Drimolen cave system in South Africa. And as early as 1.8 million years ago, the human form appeared in Eurasia, at a site in Georgia's Dmanisi in the Caucasus. From then on it was present in almost all of Eurasia, from Spain to China. After Homo sapiens, Homo erectus is the most widespread human form of all time. The provisional end point of this pioneering career was marked in 2019: when redating the site of Ngandong on the Indonesian island of Java, a research group led by Yan Rizal from the Institute of Technology in Bandung determined the last occurrence to be between 117,000 and 108,000 years ago. alt="
Thus, this species spans an era of nearly 1.9 million years. That justifies another superlative. Homo erectus is by far the most successful species of the genus Homo to date. For comparison: the anatomically modern human being, the only human form on our planet that still exists today, has existed for just 300,000 years. So "Image" are the earliest Sapiens finds from Djebel Irhoud in Morocco. However, Homo erectus still raises big questions among paleoanthropologists. Based on the philosophy bestseller by Richard David Precht, the biggest riddle could be: "Who was Homo erectus - and if so, how many?" … alt="