Human evolution

But if homo erectus was just an ordinary dude…

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As experts say here…

If you bumped into a Homo erectus in the street you might not recognise them as being very different from you. You’d see a certain “human-ness” in the stance, and his or her size and shape might be similar to yours.

But their face would be flatter, with a more obvious brow. And having a conversation would be hard – his or her language skills would be poor (although they could certainly craft a stone tool or light a fire).

Of course this is entirely hypothetical, as Homo erectus is now extinct. This enigmatic human ancestor probably evolved in Africa more than 2 million years ago, although the timing of their disappearance is less clear.

Ian Moffat, “A snapshot of our mysterious ancestor Homo erectus” at Phys.org

Hmm. At least we can know about the tools and the fire. But, in the context, what does it mean to say “his or her language skills would be poor.” What would that actually mean?

One of the most contentious aspects of Homo erectus is who to include in the species. While many researchers include a wide range of specimens from around the world as Homo erectus, some classify the African and Eurasian specimens as Homo ergaster. Others use the terms Homo erectus senso stricto (ie. in the narrow sense) for the Asian specimens and Homo erectus senso lato (ie. in the broad sense) for all specimens.

This somewhat confusing situation is actually far clearer than the early history of Homo erectus where a wide range of names including Anthropopithecus, Homo leakeyi, Pithecanthropus, Sinanthropus, Meganthropus, and Telanthropus were used. The reason for this complexity is that Homo erectus (whatever you choose to call them) have a comparatively wide range of morphological characteristics making it difficult to decide how much diversity to include within the definition of the species.

Ian Moffat, “A snapshot of our mysterious ancestor Homo erectus” at Phys.org

In short, we don’t know but we can at least invent imposing names.

See also: Can we talk? Language as the business end of consciousness

and

Do racial assumptions prevent recognizing Homo erectus as fully human?

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2 Replies to “But if homo erectus was just an ordinary dude…

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    as to:

    “If you bumped into a Homo erectus in the street you might not recognise them as being very different from you.”

    I seem to remember an evolutionist saying the same thing about Neanderthal. Oh yeah, here it is,

    “you put a suit and a hat on a Neanderthal and they could slip on the New York subway train and be unnoticed.”
    https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2013/08/neanderthals-theyre-just-like-us-maybe/278600/

    Truth is, despite the fevered imaginations of Darwinists, the missing link between humans and apes is still missing.

    The Human-Ape Missing Link — Still Missing – July 18, 2017
    Excerpt: Here is a long, substantive, and interesting article from the BBC — “We still have not found the missing link between us and apes.” It is interesting for two reasons.
    – 1. It admits that we haven’t found anything that resembles the last common ancestor (LCA) between humans and apes, what author Colin Barras calls the “missing link.”
    – 2. It admits that it’s hard to even agree on what the LCA might have looked like. —
    What it doesn’t do is admit the even bigger problem: that we don’t even have transitional forms between Australopithecus and Homo. This is a major omission.,,,,
    https://evolutionnews.org/2017/07/the-human-ape-missing-link-still-missing/

    “a team of paleo-experts from the State University of New York, Stony Brook, (which includes distinguished leaders in the field such as Tuttle, Tardieu, Senut, Susman, Stern, and Jungers, among others) insist Lucy was predominately a tree dwelling ape that did not habitually walk upright”
    Review of “Contested Bones” (Part 6 – Chapter 6 “Australopithecus afarensis” – “Lucy”) by Paul Giem – 25:00 minute mark
    https://youtu.be/QHZnhOUAe4c?list=PLHDSWJBW3DNU_twNBjopIqyFOwo_bTkXm&t=1435
    26:00 minute mark: Craig Stanford 2012, “,, Afarensis as an arboreal adapted species is still valid and still represents the consensus view held by paleoanthropologists today”.
    35:00 minute mark:
    Body size of an ape
    Skull of an ape
    Shoulders of an ape
    Rib cage of an ape
    Spine of an ape
    Hip of an ape
    Hands of an ape
    Feet of an ape
    Knee joint of an ape
    Conclusion: Lucy’s kind in mostly ape.
    36:00 minute quote: “Lucy’s distinctly ape-like nature is defended by numerous experts in the field who have published in highly respected peer-reviewed scientific journals such as,,,”

    A Big Bang Theory of Homo – Casey Luskin – August 2012
    Excerpt: To the contrary, she explains, habilis “displays much stronger similarities to African ape limb proportions” than even Lucy. She called these results “unexpected in view of previous accounts of Homo habilis as a link between australopithecines and humans.”
    Without habilis as an intermediate, it is difficult to find fossil hominins to serve as direct transitional forms between the australopithecines and Homo. Rather, the fossil record shows dramatic and abrupt changes that correspond to the appearance of Homo.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....63141.html

    New study suggests big bang theory of human evolution – U of M Press Release
    Excerpt: “The earliest H. sapiens remains differ significantly from australopithecines in both size and anatomical details. Insofar as we can tell, these changes were sudden and not gradual.”
    University of Michigan anthropologist Milford Wolpoff
    http://www.ns.umich.edu/Releas.....1000b.html

    “If pressed about man’s ancestry, I would have to unequivocally say that all we have is a huge question mark. To date, there has been nothing found to truthfully purport as a transitional species to man, including Lucy, since 1470 was as old and probably older. If further pressed, I would have to state that there is more evidence to suggest an abrupt arrival of man rather than a gradual process of evolving”.
    Richard Leakey, paleo-anthropologist, in a PBS documentary, 1990.
    http://www.wasdarwinright.com/earlyman.htm

    “A number of hominid crania are known from sites in eastern and southern Africa in the 400- to 200-thousand-year range, but none of them looks like a close antecedent of the anatomically distinctive Homo sapiens…Even allowing for the poor record we have of our close extinct kin, Homo sapiens appears as distinctive and unprecedented…there is certainly no evidence to support the notion that we gradually became who we inherently are over an extended period, in either the physical or the intellectual sense.”
    Dr. Ian Tattersall: – paleoanthropologist – emeritus curator of the American Museum of Natural History – (Masters of the Planet, 2012)

    “The evolutionary events that led to the origin of the Homo lineage are an enduring puzzle in paleoanthropology, chiefly because the fossil record from between 3 million and 2 million years ago is frustratingly sparse, especially in eastern Africa.”2
    “But with so little evidence to go on, the origin of our genus has remained as mysterious as ever.”3
    “The origin of our own genus remains frustratingly unclear.’4
    2. Kimbel, W. H. 2013. Palaeoanthropology: Hesitation on hominin history. Nature. 497 (7451): 573-574.
    3. Wong, K. 2012. First of Our Kind: Could Australopithecus sediba Be Our Long Lost Ancestor? Scientific American. 306 (4): 30-39.
    4. Wood, B. 2011. Did early Homo migrate “out of” or “in to” Africa? Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 108 (26): 10375-10376.

    “The unilineal depiction of human evolution popularized by the familiar iconography of an evolutionary ‘march to modern man’ has been proven wrong for more than 60 years. However, the cartoon continues to provide a popular straw man for scientists, writers and editors alike.”
    — Tim White, paleoanthropologist, in Current Biology Feb. 2013

    “We have all seen the canonical parade of apes, each one becoming more human. We know that, as a depiction of evolution, this line-up is tosh (i.e. nonsense). Yet we cling to it. Ideas of what human evolution ought to have been like still colour our debates.”
    Henry Gee, editor of Nature (478, 6 October 2011, page 34, doi:10.1038/478034a),

    Skull “Rewrites” Story of Human Evolution — Again – Casey Luskin – October 22, 2013
    Excerpt: “There is a big gap in the fossil record,” Zollikofer told NBC News. “I would put a question mark there. Of course it would be nice to say this was the last common ancestor of Neanderthals and us, but we simply don’t know.”
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....78221.html

    How do Theistic Evolutionists Explain the Fossil Record and Human Origins? – Casey Luskin – September 14, 2012
    Excerpt: In six recent articles (see the links at right), I have argued that the fossil record does not support the evolution of ape-like species into human-like species. Rather, hominin fossils generally fall into two distinct groups: ape-like species and human-like species, with a large, unbridged gap between them.,,, Third, not all paleontologists agree with Kidder that the lack of transitional fossils is simply the result of the unsophisticated (and all-too-easy) excuse the fossil record is poor. Consider what paleontologist Niles Eldredge and paleoanthropologist Ian Tattersal (who are both committed evolutionists) co-wrote in a book on human origins:
    “The record jumps, and all the evidence shows that the record is real: the gaps we see reflect real events in life’s history — not the artifact of a poor fossil record.”
    (Niles Eldredge and Ian Tattersall, The Myths of Human Evolution, p. 59 (NY: Columbia University Press, 1982).)
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....64301.html

  2. 2
    bornagain77 says:

    Contested Bones: Is There Any Solid Fossil Evidence for Ape-to-Man Evolution? – Dr. John Sanford and Chris Rupe
    Excerpt: We have spent four years carefully examining the scientific literature on this subject. We have discovered that within this field (paleoanthropology), virtually all the famous hominin types have either been discredited or are still being hotly contested. Within this field, not one of the hominin types have been definitively established as being in the lineage from ape to man. This includes the famous fossils that have been nicknamed Lucy, Ardi, Sediba, Habilis, Naledi, Hobbit, Erectus, and Neaderthal. Well-respected people in the field openly admit that their field is in a state of disarray. It is very clear that the general public has been deceived regarding the credibility and significance of the reputed hominin fossils.
    We will show that the actual fossil evidence is actually most consistent with the following three points. 1) The hominin bones reveal only two basic types; ape bones (Ardi and Lucy), and human bones (Naledi, Hobbit, Erectus, and Neaderthal). 2) The ape bones and the human bones have been repeatedly found together in the same strata – therefore both lived at the same basic timeframe (the humans were apparently hunting and eating the apes). 3) Because the hominin bones were often found in mixed bone beds (with bones of many animal species in the same site), numerous hominin types represent chimeras (mixtures) of ape and human bones (i.e., Sediba, Habilis).
    We will also present evidence that the anomalous hominin bones that are of the human (Homo) type most likely represent isolated human populations that experienced severe inbreeding and subsequent genetic degeneration. This best explains why these Homo bones display aberrant morphologies, reduced body size, and reduced brain volume.
    We conclude that the hominin bones do not reveal a continuous upward progression from ape to man, but rather reveal a clear separation between the human type and the ape type. The best evidence for any type of intermediate “ape-men” derived from bones collected from mixed bone beds (containing bones of both apes and men), which led to the assembly of chimeric skeletons. Therefore, the hominin fossils do not prove human evolution at all.,,,
    We suggest that the field of paleoanthropology has been seriously distorted by a very strong ideological agenda and by very ambitious personalities.
    https://ses.edu/contested-bones-is-there-any-solid-fossil-evidence-for-ape-to-man-evolution/

    Human/Ape Common Ancestry: Following the Evidence – Casey Luskin – June 2011
    Excerpt: So the researchers constructed an evolutionary tree based on 129 skull and tooth measurements for living hominoids, including gorillas, chimpanzees, orangutans and humans, and did the same with 62 measurements recorded on Old World monkeys, including baboons, mangabeys and macaques. They also drew upon published molecular phylogenies. At the outset, Wood and Collard assumed the molecular evidence was correct. “There were so many different lines of genetic evidence pointing in one direction,” Collard explains. But no matter how the computer analysis was run, the molecular and morphological trees could not be made to match15 (see figure, below). Collard says this casts grave doubt on the reliability of using morphological evidence to determine the fine details of evolutionary trees for higher primates. “It is saying it is positively misleading,” he says. The abstract of the pair’s paper stated provocatively that “existing phylogenetic hypotheses about human evolution are unlikely to be reliable”.[10]
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....nt-9266481

    No Known Hominin Is Common Ancestor of Neanderthals and Modern Humans, Study Suggests – Oct. 21, 2013
    Excerpt: The article, “No known hominin species matches the expected dental morphology of the last common ancestor of Neanderthals and modern humans,” relies on fossils of approximately 1,200 molars and premolars from 13 species or types of hominins — humans and human relatives and ancestors. Fossils from the well-known Atapuerca sites have a crucial role in this research, accounting for more than 15 percent of the complete studied fossil collection.,,,
    They conclude with high statistical confidence that none of the hominins usually proposed as a common ancestor, such as Homo heidelbergensis, H. erectus and H. antecessor, is a satisfactory match.
    “None of the species that have been previously suggested as the last common ancestor of Neanderthals and modern humans has a dental morphology that is fully compatible with the expected morphology of this ancestor,” Gómez-Robles said.
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....153202.htm

    Here are a few examples of how misleading Darwinists can be with the evidence:

    Man’s Earliest Direct Ancestors Looked More Apelike Than Previously Believed – March 27, 2007
    Excerpt: “Dr. Leakey produced an intrinsically biased reconstruction (of 1470/ Homo Rudolfensis) based on erroneous preconceived expectations of early human appearance that violated principles of craniofacial development,”,,,
    “Because he did not employ biological principles, Dr. Leakey produced a reconstruction that could not have existed in real life,” 
    – Dr. Timothy Bromage
    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/03/070324133018.htm

    Contemplating Bill Nye’s 51 skulls slide – February 10, 2014 – with video
    Excerpt: David A. DeWitt, Biology & Chemistry chair at Liberty, knows a thing or two about skulls, and writes to say,
    “This afternoon and evening I tracked down 46 of the 51 skulls that were on the slide Nye showed in the Ken Ham debate (at about 1:05 on the Youtube video).
    This was a challenge because some of them are not very well analyzed, partial skulls, etc. While some of them are well known, others are rarely discussed. I believe only a well-trained anthropologist would have been able to address that slide in the very brief time that it was visible. It was especially confusing because the skulls are in different orientations (including one that is viewed from the bottom and one that is just a jaw). They were not shown with the same scale so the relative sizes are wrong, and they are not grouped or lined up in any clear order. They are mixed up by type of skull and by date, and the only label is the name of the individual skull. I suspect that this was deliberate.,,,”
    “I can only conclude that the sole purpose of showing such a slide was to confuse and obfuscate, not educate.”
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....lls-slide/

    Paleoanthropology
    Excerpt: In regards to the pictures of the supposed ancestors of man featured in science journals and the news media Boyce Rensberger wrote in the journal Science the following regarding their highly speculative nature:
    “Unfortunately, the vast majority of artist’s conceptions are based more on imagination than on evidence. But a handful of expert natural-history artists begin with the fossil bones of a hominid and work from there…. Much of the reconstruction, however, is guesswork. Bones say nothing about the fleshy parts of the nose, lips, or ears (or eyes). Artists must create something between an ape and a human being; the older the specimen is said to be, the more apelike they make it…. Hairiness is a matter of pure conjecture.”
    http://conservapedia.com/Evolu.....thropology

    Of related note:

    Refutation of human-chimp genetic similarity by alternative splicing, dGRNs- October 2019
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/nathan-lents-plugs-joshua-swamidasss-book-on-adam-and-eve-at-usa-today/#comment-685918

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