256 pages, 150 col photos, 20 col illus, 20 maps
Scientists believe that every human on the planet is descended from a woman who lived in Africa 100,000 years ago. "Origins" tells the incredible story of homo sapiens - where we came from, why we made it (and why 20 human-like species didn't) and what it means to be 'human' anyway. Part one takes us back through evolution to meet our ancestors. From the ape-like Proconsul who lived in Africa 17 million years ago to Homo floresiensis, the dwarf human species which survived on the Indonesian island of Flores until 18,000 years ago.
The most accurate facial reconstructions available bring us up close with these familiar yet alien relatives, and artworks give a compelling insight into their lives - where they lived, what they wore, whether they spoke, what they ate, what animals existed. Graphical timelines untangle the relationships between the different species and highlight our remarkable evolutionary journey. The second part shows how humans spread across the planet to form the diverse races and peoples we know today, from our first steps out of Africa 100,000 years ago to our arrival in New Zealand as recently as 1,000 years ago.
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