The First Human: The Race to Discover Our Earliest Ancestors

The First Human: The Race to Discover Our Earliest Ancestors

Ann Gibbons


This dynamic chronicle of the race to discover the "missing links" among people and apes transports readers into the hugely aggressive international of fossil searching and into the lives of the bold scientists purpose on pinpointing the sunrise of humankind.

The quest to discover the place and whilst the earliest human ancestors first seemed is likely one of the most enjoyable and not easy of all clinical ambitions. the 1st Human is the tale of 4 overseas groups enthusiastic about fixing the secret of human evolution and of the serious rivalries that propel them.

An award-winning technological know-how author, Ann Gibbons introduces a number of the maverick fossil hunters and describes their most vital discoveries in Africa. there's Tim White, the irreverent and terrific Californian whose group came upon the partial skeleton of a primate that lived greater than 4.4 million years in the past in Ethiopia. If White can turn out that it was once hominid—an ancestor of people and never of chimpanzees or different nice apes—he can lay declare to gaining knowledge of the oldest identified member of the human family members. As White painstakingly prepares the bones, the French paleontologist Michel Brunet comes forth with one other, much more startling locate. popular for his paintings within the so much distant and opposed destinations, Brunet and his crew discover a gorgeous cranium in Chad that may set the date of the beginnings of humankind to just about seven million years in the past. different groups—one led through the zoologist Meave Leakey, the opposite through the British geologist Martin Pickford and his companion, Brigitte Senut, a French paleontologist—enter the race with landmark discoveries of different fossils vying for the prestige of the 1st human ancestor.

Through scrupulous examine and vibrant first-person reporting, the 1st Human takes readers behind the curtain to bare the serious demanding situations of fossil looking on a grand aggressive scale.

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