Homo Erectus is not the name for guys with short hair and mustaches running around San Francisco as you might have guessed (Joke!), but actually it was an early member of the human line, Homo. We are Homo Sapiens sapiens, just the latest in a long line. Homo Erectus was an earlier model. He was a man, but not a modern man. Sort of like an earlier model. Going back further, you run into the Australopithecines in Africa, like the famous Lucy specimen. This is not yet a man, but it is not an ape either. It’s sort of an ape-man, or an ape turning into a human. That’s the best way to describe them.
Anti-evolutionist idiots like to yell that we have never found the missing link, but Lucy is pretty darn close. Further, going back even further to about 6 million YBP*, they have found what looks like the closest thing to a missing link so far, an ape that is starting to turn into a man-ape. Proconsul is a famous fellow. He is the first of the apes, living in Africa about 16 million YBP, apparently a split from the monkeys. Yes, monkeys and apes are completely different folks, and this is important to keep in mind. Don’t mix them up!
Erectus was always thought to have evolved in Africa out of a similar line of early Homo types, most of which just went extinct. Probably about 2 million YBP or so. He then is said to have to moved out into Eurasia, and Asia, particularly China and Indonesia. The famous Java Man and Peking Man are Homo Erectuses from Indonesia and China respectively. Java Man was around as early as 1.8 million YBP. And Erectus is living in the Caucasus around the same time.
What’s curious about this skull in Georgia in the Caucasus is that it is said to predate Erectus skulls in Africa. Further, his brain is 40% smaller than African Erectus’ brain. The smaller size implies that he was an earlier model that gave rise to the more advanced model in Africa. The fact that he is earlier also implies that Erectus arose in Eurasia and moved to Africa later on and then did a lot of evolution there, eventually giving rise to Homo Sapiens (Yes, we came directly from Erectus).
The White racists love this, because they really hate the Out of the Africa (OOA) model. Scratch a White person dissing the OOA model nowadays, and you often find a racist motivation. A while back, multiregionalism was a valid perspective, but now it’s been shot all to Hell with excellent models showing that all humans have come from an African Eve that lived in SW Africa (around Namibia and Angola) about 180,000 YBP.
The racists just can’t get over it. “Grandpa was a nigger”* is just too much for their silly weak egos to handle. In contrast, the Asians that I have told about this seem mostly to handle it well. One Chinese guy shrugged his shoulders and said, “Yeah? So what? So we came from Blacks? Big deal. If you go back far enough, we were frogs. Why should I get upset about this.” I told my Mom about this and she laughed and said, “See? Asians don’t get upset about it because they are smarter than us Whites.” I think she’s right.
It’s important to note that this latest find does not shoot OOA at all. All it suggests is that Erectus sprang up in Eurasia. Out of what? Obviously out of prior Homo types. Where did these prior Homo types in Eurasia come from? Africa, where they all came from. See what I mean? Does this find shoot the African Eve Theory? Nope. Even if Erectus rose in Eurasia, he moved back to Africa, evolved a great deal down there, and eventually gave rise to Sapiens in Africa, who gave rise to us. We still all came from one African woman 180,000 YBP. The Georgian find doesn’t change that one bit.
Homo Sapiens idaltu was an early Homo Sapiens that lived about 160,000 YBP in Ethiopia. Although he appears to have gone extinct, nevertheless, he seems to have given rise to Homo Sapiens sapiens. The date of H.S.s is not well known, but he dates back at least to the Khoisan genetic line, which dates to 110,000 YBP. Khoisan are Bushmen.
Nevertheless, the 110,000 YBP date is challenged by a recent find called the Omo Remains, which were also found in Ethiopia. Apparently Homo Sapiens sapiens (modern man), Omo dates all the way back to 195,000 YBP. Much remains to be sorted out.
Idaltu was quite robust, but he looked much more like a modern human than Neandertalis in Europe.
Despite a lot of yelling on the part of fans of the theory, there seems to be zero evidence of Neandertal genes in modern humans. This is also a fave theory of White racists – that White people came directly from Neandertalis, thereby avoiding the sticky OOA theory which claims White folks had some Negro ancestors. Even Paleothilically, that’s a hard sell to White racists.
Some of the hardcores take it a lot further and imply that the races of man actually go back 1-2 million YBP. Whites to some proto-White Erectus, Asians to some proto-Asian Erectus dude, Blacks to African Erectus. This theory seems to me to be quite silly.
Homo Rhodesiensis is a very interesting fellow. He lived from 125,000-300,000 YBP in Africa. The best skull was found in Rhodesia in 1921 and it’s an excellent specimen. The best theory seems to be that Rhodesia Man had branched off from Erectus proper into a more advanced line. It also looks like Rhodesia Man gave rise to Idaltu, and Idaltu gave rise to you and me.
The line looks something like this:
Erectus -> Rhodesia Man -> Homo Sapiens Idaltu -> Homo Sapiens sapiens (you, me, Mom and the kids).
Rhodesia Man is quite a robust fellow and has features that have led some to call him “The African Neandertal.” However, this analysis is not proper. Instead he seems to be about halfway in between a Neanderthal and a modern man = he is much more gracile and progressive than Neandertal, who’s a bit of a brute. Idaltu is yet more gracile and progressive than Rhodesia Man, and H.S.s. is yet more gracile and progressive than Idaltu. The evolution of man is a move from archaic robustness towards progressive gracility.
Homo Sapiens heidelbergensis (found in Heidelberg, Germany) just seems to be a European Rhodesia Man. Looks like Rhodesia Man rose in Africa, then moved out of Africa to Europe. H.s.h. is quite a confusing fellow, and I’m not going to go into him here because I don’t understand him well.
The comments after the article are somewhat interesting.
*Years before present.
**Used sardonically. Please don’t take offense.