Bhartiya History

Reexamining history from a Hindu perspective and exposing the colonial distortion of their Vedic heritage that fails to recognize the spiritual root of Indic civilization.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Did Early Humans Go North or South?

Peter Forster and Shuichi Matsumura


When the first early humans ventured out of Africa, which way did they go? Studies of maternally inherited mitochondrial DNA are revealing the excursion choices of our earliest ancestors. In their
Perspective, Forster and Matsumura discuss two new studies of the mitochondrial DNA of the indigenous peoples of Malaysia and the Andaman islands (Macaulay et al., Thangaraj et al.). These studies suggest that the earliest humans took a southern route along the coastline of the Indian Ocean before fanning out over the rest of the world.

Extract from Forster & Matsumura

"In Europe, Neanderthals were replaced by modern humans only about 30,000 to 40,000 years ago, whereas southern Australia was definitely inhabited 46,000 years ago and northern Australia and Southeast Asia necessarily even earlier (9, 10). Or did our ancestors instead depart from East Africa, crossing the Red Sea and then following the coast of the Indian Ocean (11)?

9. G. Barker, Asian Perspect.44, 90 (2005).
10. J.M. Bowler et al., Nature421, 837 (2003).
11. S. Oppenheimer, Out of Eden (Constable, London, 2003).".


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