Dragon Man

27 Jun 2021

At https://phys.org/news/2021-06-dragon-fossil-neanderthals-closest-relativ... ... a near perfect fossilised human skull was found in the 1930s in Harbin City in the Heilongjong province of China. It belongs to Homo long - the dragon man. Three papers published this June concern the fossil cranium. Why now? It had almost square eye sockets, thick brow ridges, a wide mouth, and very large teeth - all the better for chomping on unprocessed food. It is typically similar to other archaic humans so not really a surprise. It has been dated to 146,000 years ago, in the Middle Pleistocene. It was therefore contemporary with Neanderthals and Denisovans in central and western Asia, and in Europe.

The Chinese, for a long time, have resisted the western 'consensus' Out of Africa model - and they have presented very strong evidence over the years to suggest it did not apply to eastern Asians. As the Out of Africa theory has begun to unravel the Chinese alternative view is looking more and more appropriate. Firstly, they have backtracked from the 50,000 years ago boundary line between modern humans and their predecessors as it did not fit with the likely occupation of Australia by Aborigines. There was an attempt to brand the latter as a relic population of Homo erectus but that did not go down well - for modern political reasons. More recent evidence has suggested a link to the Denisovans - but grasping that nettle will prove to be more than a touch itchy and twitchy. It seems to me this new research is an attempt to bring the Chinese view of the evolution of humans back into the equation, and that is long overdue. For the moment we are being told that East Asians evolved separately from those in other parts of Eurasia. However, it is about time some realism was brought into the discussion and the Out of Africa theory binned. It is an artifact of multicultural propaganda and inhibits perfectly logical thinking on the subject. Well done the Chinese for resisting for so long the so-called 'consensus' in science.

The article provides links to the three papers.

Over at https://phys.org/news/2021-06-nesher-ramla-homo-fossil-discovery.html .... this paper provides some clues on how delicate it is to try and skirt around the Out of Africa consensus and come up with an honest assessment. The authors are caught between a point of view they know the reviewers will stipulate and the facts of the matter. However, the facts of the matter are very few and far between, and therefore paying lip service to the overriding mantra is quite easily achieved. It does illustrate the difference in the attitude of the researchers between east and west. The Levant has long been considered one of the corridors through which modern humans arrived in western Asia from Africa, and such fossilised remains have tended to have an importance they don't really deserve. It is a case of interpreting evidence from small pieces of bone. In this instance, a mandible and parietal bones found at a site in Israel. The Levant has long been the region most preferred, by European scientists, as the route Out of Africa - and into western Asia and Europe. The Nesher Ramla site dates back, it is estimated, between 120,000 and 140,000 years ago - so very close to the date for the Dragon Man in China. The mandible appears to be very close to those known from Neanderthals - but are said to be more like modern humans when it comes to the cranium [or those bits of the cranium that have survived]. Obviously, the temptation is for the researchers to see this fossil human as a mixture of the two, proof of interbreeding. It seems a lot of speculation on what is very limited evidence, and it is probably unjustified from an honesty point of view. Identifying modern humans via bits of skull is open to accusations of finding evidence to fit the theory - in this case, Out of Africa.