These Ancient Chinese teeth are going to bring about major changes in our history
The recent discovery of a set of 47 teeth has proved to be a lot to chew on for scientists, as this has provided us with a whole new perspective on the history of humans and their migration pattern. The teeth are said to be at least 80,000 years old or more. This comes as a shock because up until now, most researchers believed that humans only left Africa around 60,000 years ago and to Europe, not China. Therefore, the discovery of these teeth becomes all the more important.
1 Ancient Chinese teeth, what does this mean for Asia?
The teeth in question here, were found in a cave in Hunan provence of China and are very similar to the modern day humans. The researchers have no doubts and believe that these teeth indeed belong to Homo sapiens who lived 80,000 years ago.
“This is stunning, it’s major league, and it’s one of the most important finds coming out of Asia in the last decade”, quoted an excited Michael Petraglia, an archaeologist at the University of Oxford. Although he wasn’t involved in the actual research, he was very excited about the discovery and in fact, this discovery has left most of us baffled.
The find also raises other important questions such as why did the existence of these Homo sapiens go unrecorded? Are there any other sources that could provide more insight? Why didn’t these humans travel to Europe?
2 Does this mean Neanderthals were more superior?
This finding shows that humans were present in the South of China at the same time when Neanderthals migrated to trek over Europe. This coexistence raises all the other theories about the superiority of modern humans. This has been aptly pointed out by María Martinón-Torres, also a co-author of the National Center on Human Evolution in Spain. Maria told Discovery News, “The coincidence between the arrival of H. sapiens to Europe and the Neanderthal extinction has often been interpreted as evidence of the superiority of modern humans, however, we now wonder that if modern humans were already present in southern China more than 80,000 years ago, why were they not capable of entering Europe until 45,000 ago? Maybe because Neanderthals were there, it was not easy to take over ‘their’ land.”
This sure has given us many bones to pick for our teeth! We are already aware about Neanderthals and their jewelry and art making talents; who knows they could be more than that!
3 A possibility of new history
All the initial excitement has started to give place to important questions as this could be one of the biggest discoveries in the history of Homo sapiens. Researchers say that the owners of the ancient Chinese teeth did not actually live in the cave, and were merely dragged by their predators. To understand how humans existed there and whether or not these humans were Asians; more research needs to be done.
Even though the teeth are a great start, we cannot base everything on just that. The teeth have to be carbon dated to determine the exact time period and other evidences of human existence. Researchers have found no tools or art or any kind of fossil to prove otherwise.
In any case, researchers believe that the teeth could belong to groups of people who came to Asia through Europe and not the ancestors of the modern Asians. This group could have picked up Neanderthals’ DNA on the way. To determine any kind of information about these early travellers, we have to hope for new findings, which could be a great breakthrough for the history of humans on earth.
The finding of these ancient Chinese teeth has given us great information about ourselves; we are older on this planet than we used to believe, let’s wait and watch what history unfolds and where does it take us in future.