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1 SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN EXCLUSIVE ONLINE ISSUE AUGUST 2005 THE HUMAN ODYSSEY If you want to know where you come from, those genealogy Web sites will get you only so far. To really plumb your origins, you’ll need to look at the fossil record. And what a record it is, documenting millions of years of human and ape evolution. This exclusive online issue highlights some of the most exciting paleoanthropological discoveries of the past decade. Travel back in time to the Miocene epoch, when Earth was truly a planet of the apes. Explore the intense debate surrounding the emergence of the first hominids in Africa. Discover when our kind started walking upright. Learn how spectacular fossils from the Republic of Georgia have toppled old ideas about when, how and why humans finally left the African motherland to colonize the rest of the world. And get inside the minds of our ancestors as they started thinking like us—much earlier than expected, it turns out. After millions of years of sharing the landscape with multiple hominid forms, Homo sapiens eventually found itself alone, as one article in this compendium recounts. But the roots of our solitude may be shallower than previously thought: the recent and controversial discovery on Flores of miniature human remains suggests that our species coexisted alongside another human type as recently as 13,000 years ago.— The Editors TABLE OF CONTENTS Scientifi cAmerican.com exclusive online issue no. 23 2 Planet of the Apes BY DAVID R. BEGUN; SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN, AUGUST 2003 During the Miocene epoch, as many as 100 species of apes roamed throughout the Old World. New fossils suggest that the ones that gave rise to living great apes and humans evolved not in Africa but Eurasia 12 An Ancestor to Call Our Own BY KATE WONG; SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN, JANUARY 2003 Controversial new fossils could bring scientists closer than ever to the origin of humanity 20 Early Hominid Fossils from Africa BY MEAVE LEAKEY AND ALAN WALKER; SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN, JUNE 1997 A new species of “Australopithecus”, the ancestor of “Homo”, pushes back the origins of bipedalism to some four million years ago 25 Once We Were Not Alone BY IAN TATTERSALL; NEW LOOK AT HUMAN EVOLUTION 2003 Today we take for granted that Homo sapiens is the only hominid on earth. Yet for at least four million years many hominid species shared the planet. What makes us different? 33 Stranger in a New Land BY KATE WONG; SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN, NOVEMBER 2003 Stunning finds in the Republic of Georgia upend long-standing ideas about the first hominids to journey out of Africa 40 The Morning of the Modern Mind BY KATE WONG; SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN, JUNE 2005 Controversial discoveries suggest that the roots of our vaunted intellect run far deeper than is commonly believed 48 The Littlest Human BY KATE WONG; SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN, FEBRUARY 2005 A spectacular find in Indonesia reveals that a strikingly different hominid shared the earth with our kind in the not so distant past COPYRIGHT 2005 SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN, INC.
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