The idea that modern humans evolved in East Africa 200,000 years ago, is under attack by the discovery of 300,000-years old human remains in one Moroccan mine.
The fossils found in the old mine in the remote Moroccan mountains, shook the foundations of one of the oldest theories of the development of modern man – that Homo sapiens originated in the “cradle of humanity” in East Africa 200,000 years ago.
Archaeologists after years of excavation uncovered bones of at least five people in the Jebel Irhoud, once barite mine, about 100 kilometers west of Marrakech.
Despite knowing that the remains are old, they have been very surprised when the test results came showing that the teeth and the stone tools, are dating from the period 300,000 years ago.
“ I was very surprised. I expected it to be old, but not so old,” explains Jean-Jacques Hublin, a scientist at the Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology – Max Planck.
He notes that the extreme old ages makes these bones the oldest known remains of the modern man.
“This gives us a completely different picture of the evolution of our species. This means that the process of evolution went much further in the past. It seems that our species was present throughout Africa 300,000 years ago. If there was a “paradise garden” it may have been as large as some order continent”, said Hublin.