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Perfect 29 Mill-year-old Fossilised Skull Unearthed In Egypt


Jun
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The second and almost perfect 29 million-year-old fossilised skull of an ancient relative of humans, apes and monkeys has been unearthed in Egypt, media reported Tuesday. The skull, from a species known as Aegyptopithecus zeuxis -- "linking Egyptian ape" or dawn ape, was identified by Duke University primatologist Elwyn Simons in a quarry on the outskirts of Cairo. Because of the new specimen's remarkable wholeness, Simons and his colleagues were able to subject it to micro CT scanning, a computerized X-ray technique that can be used to calculate the approximate dimensions of the brain the cranium once encased.

 

According to Simons, the specimen is from a young female that lived in the early Oligocene, a period of global cooling, volcanic eruptions and seismic disturbance, driven by the collision of the Indian and Asian continental plates.

 

Based on previous fossils collected at the same dig site in a quarry outside Cairo, scientists have hypothesized that this early monkey already would have had a relatively large brain, said Simons.

 

But the researchers' new report, which displays the computer-reconstructed brain as a false-colour red mass within the grey skull case, suggests that the skull was half the size of the first dawn ape skull, a male found in 1966, suggesting modern apes and monkeys developed larger brains later in evolution.

 

The species "had a brain that might have been even smaller than that of a modern lemur's," Simons said. "This means the big-brained monkeys and apes developed their large brains at a later point in time."

 

But measurements led the scientists to believe it was capable of forming large social troops similar to those seen in modern day primates. The shape of the eye sockets suggest the species was active during the daytime, like modern apes.

 

Aegyptopithecus fossils have been found in two quarries separated by about a kilometer within Egypt's Fayum Depression. Scientific evidence suggests the location, now arid, was a tropical forest 29 million years ago.

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Jun, very interesting finding. Did the source show any pictures of it or how it fit into man's evolution. I suppose that all primates came from a single species then branched out into the ones we have today, and it would be interesting to know how this one fit into our evolutionary lineage. :thanks:

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Jun, can you quote the source for your stuff?

 

Oops! I always put a link to where I find news, I guess I forgot. There is a small pic.

 

It's from the Chinese news here - (Xinhuanet) - Editor: Jiang Yuxia - http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2007-05/...ent_6101500.htm

 

More here - http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/20...tiny-brain.html

 

Human Ancestor Had Lime-Size Brain John Roach

May 14, 2007 An extraordinarily complete skull of a 30-million-year-old human ancestor once held a brain about the size of a lime, according to a new study.

 

The skull—of a species related to apes, humans, and monkeys—is evidence that the more advanced and bigger brains of African primates developed later than previously believed, researchers said.

 

Elwyn Simons, a primatologist at Duke University, and colleagues discovered only the second intact cranium of Aegyptopithecus zeuxis found to date. The skull is "extraordinarily unusual," he said, mainly because it's complete and uncrushed.

 

Brain Size

 

The completeness of the fossil skull allowed Simons and colleagues to take computerized x-rays and create a virtual model of the specimen's tiny brain.

 

Based on analyses of previous fossil skulls collected at the dig site outside Cairo, Egypt, scientists had assumed the ancient monkey's brain was larger and more advanced.

 

The new fossil indicates Aegyptopithecus had a relatively primitive brain compared to its descendants: humans, chimpanzees, gorillas, and other so-called Old World primates.

 

 

Nevertheless, the brain region responsible for vision, called the visual cortex, was large. This suggests that, like many primates, Aegyptopithecus had good vision.

 

"Although its eye sockets were small," Simons added, "it was daytime active. It has high visual acuity unlike noctural animals [such as] lemurs and bush babies."

 

In addition, the new skull is less than half the size of the only other nearly complete Aegyptopithecus skull, found by Simons and colleagues found at the same Egyptian site in 1966.

 

 

Comparing the two skulls allowed the researchers to conclude the new one is from a female, which may have weighed about 5.5 pounds (2.5 kilograms). The first is from a male twice that size, they say. The size difference between the sexes is similar to that among larger Old World monkeys or gorillas—the second closest human ancestor, after chimpanzees.

 

Simons said a large size difference between sexes in primates is a sign they live in large social groups.

 

Theories Challenged

 

Dean Falk is an anthropologist at Florida State University in Tallahassee and an expert on brain evolution. She was not involved in the new study.

 

She said the new study, which appeared online today in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, challenges "perceived truths" that large brain size was required for things like daytime activity and living in large social groups.

 

"[The new study] is saying you don't have increased brain size back when you have some of these things," she said.

 

In fact, Falk believes the virtual model of Aegyptopithecus' brain, used in the new study, suggests the brain was even less advanced than the researchers propose.

 

However, Falk agrees that the brain model does confirm an enlarged area for vision, suggesting good eyesight was important early on for our ancestors.

 

"All of this makes sense to me," she said, "and it's nifty."

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Thanks Jun! Awesome! Is that skull small or what! It seems it would have to be really close to the specie from which all primates evolved. It states that even the monkeys' and apes' brains have evolved considerably too. Thanks again Jun! :thanks:

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Thanks Jun! Awesome! Is that skull small or what! It seems it would have to be really close to the specie from which all primates evolved. It states that even the monkeys' and apes' brains have evolved considerably too. Thanks again Jun! :thanks:

 

You're welcome. I'm always scouring the web for this type of information.

 

I found this particularly interesting -"a large size difference between sexes in primates is a sign they live in large social groups."

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Nothing can be that old and be "almost perfect". This find just proves that the earth is indeed only about 6000 years old! Thanks for strengthening my faith this morning! Hallelujah!

 

 

 

:HaHa:

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Nothing can be that old and be "almost perfect". This find just proves that the earth is indeed only about 6000 years old! Thanks for strengthening my faith this morning! Hallelujah!

 

 

 

:HaHa:

Yes indeed Brother Jeff! The skulls of Adam and Eve! Praise HIM! Praise HIM! :sing:

 

It's only a matter of time before the constant study of the Word of Our Lord will return our mind to this perfect state seen in the picture instead of the evil bloated state that it is currently in. We see in the revealed skulls of Adam and Eve the size of a humbled skull and we must return to this state instead of our Cain-sized cranium.

 

Please Lord, remove this shell of reason and wisdom from my mind. I renounce the Cain within me and wish only to return to the revealed Adam and Eve-ness so that I might walk naked before you. Through the smallness of my new brain may your glory finally be made manifest to me. May I enter your garden and partake freely of bananas. Your perfect food. :notworthy:

 

mwc

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I found this particularly interesting -"a large size difference between sexes in primates is a sign they live in large social groups."

Was it always the male that consistently had the larger size, of those living in large social groups? Or were the findings mixed according to the social group in which they were found? What do you attribute the cause yielding that finding?

 

I was curious about mankind, before allocation of roles according to gender, if the male and female were probably of equal strength and size as we find in most other mammals. Could it have been our stabilizing process into communities that progressively gave roles requiring less strength to women, which caused men to evolve with greater physical strength, therefore larger size?

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This is an awesome site I just found. Take the virtual tour. It's wonderful!

 

San Diego Museum of Man

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Was it always the male that consistently had the larger size...

Get this straight...never question the male's size! :nono:

 

mwc

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This is an awesome site I just found. Take the virtual tour. It's wonderful!

 

San Diego Museum of Man

 

NBBTB, you always know how to find the best stuff! Thanks for that amazing site too!

 

I am curious as to how this museum shows our ancestors at about 140,000 years ago coming from Germany, yet there is a mitochondrial DNA pathway that takes all of us back to a common maternal female at that time in Kenya or Ethiopia.

 

More on the Mitochondrial Eve found here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mitochondrial_Eve

 

I'm curious as to know, how does this DNA evidence coincide with all the other evidence of our evolutionary path? :shrug:

 

 

Was it always the male that consistently had the larger size...

Get this straight...never question the male's size! :nono:

 

mwc

 

Then.... I suppose I should just accept, without question, males are always larger than the female. :Hmm:

 

 

 

 

 

 

(note, that was a statement, NOT a question)

 

 

:HaHa::funny:

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Nothing can be that old and be "almost perfect". This find just proves that the earth is indeed only about 6000 years old! Thanks for strengthening my faith this morning! Hallelujah!

 

 

 

:HaHa:

Yes indeed Brother Jeff! The skulls of Adam and Eve! Praise HIM! Praise HIM! :sing:

 

It's only a matter of time before the constant study of the Word of Our Lord will return our mind to this perfect state seen in the picture instead of the evil bloated state that it is currently in. We see in the revealed skulls of Adam and Eve the size of a humbled skull and we must return to this state instead of our Cain-sized cranium.

 

Please Lord, remove this shell of reason and wisdom from my mind. I renounce the Cain within me and wish only to return to the revealed Adam and Eve-ness so that I might walk naked before you. Through the smallness of my new brain may your glory finally be made manifest to me. May I enter your garden and partake freely of bananas. Your perfect food. :notworthy:

 

mwc

 

:lmao::funny:

 

O, Amen! Preach it, Brother! Glory! Lord, I humble my skull before You, and I ask You to please make it Perfect in size and in structure so that it may bring glory to You and manifest Your Greatness. Let my skull be a witness in this lost and sinful world for You! In Jesus Mighty Name I pray, AMEN and AMEN!

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  • 2 weeks later...
It could be a recent skull. We know that creationists have similar brain sizes with some even smaller than that.

 

LOL, perhaps, but would they be perfect?

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