Human domination of our earth is now so complete that it is easy to forget how recently our role in the history of our planet began: the earliest apes evolved around 20 million years ago, yet homo sapiens has existed for a mere 160,000 years. In the intervening period, dozens of species of early ape and human have lived and died out, leaving behind the fossilized remains that have helped to build up the detailed picture of our evolution revealed in this book. It explores every aspect of the study of ape and human evolution in three accessible sections, lavishly illustrated throughout with photographs, diagrams, timelines and specially commissioned drawings.
The book includes new descriptions of the famous ‘Ardi’ skeleton (Ardipithecus ramidus; information on the newly discovered species Australopithecus sediba; fresh work on the dwarf-human remains from Indonesia; new DNA research showing that modern humans living outside Africa have traces of Neanderthal genetic heritage; new discoveries from a Siberian cave suggesting another, as yet unnamed human species lived alongside Neanderthals and modern humans.
This compelling and authoritative account is essential reading for anyone interested in, or studying, the story of human origins.
'A spectacular, authoritative guide…. It will bring you up to speed on even the most recent discoveries'
'Read it and evolve'
Current World Archaeology
'Readable and accessible … this is the book to read'
BBC History Magazine
'An illuminating and interesting, up-to-date account'