Australopithecus sediba is a species of Australopithecus of the early Pleistocene, identified based on fossil remains dated to about 2 million years ago. The fossils were found together at the bottom of the Malapa Cave, where they fell to their death. Over 220 fragments from the species have recovered to date. MH1 is disarticulated and 34% complete if skeletal elements known to be in a block are included while MH2 is 45. 6% complete. Australopithecus sediba may have lived in savannas but ate fruit and other foods from the similar to modern-day savanna chimpanzees. The conditions in which the individuals were buried and fossilized were extraordinary, the first specimen of A. sediba was found by paleoanthropologist Lee Bergers nine-year-old son, Matthew, on August 15,2008. While exploring near his fathers dig site in the hills north of Johannesburg, on the Malapa Nature Reserve. The boy alerted his father to the find, who could not believe what he saw — a hominid clavicle, upon turning the block over, sticking out of the back of the rock was a mandible with a tooth, a canine, sticking out.
And I almost died, he recalled, the fossil turned out to belong to a 4 ft 2 in juvenile male, whose skull was discovered in March 2009 by Bergers team. The find was announced to the public on April 8,2010, found at the Malapa archeological site were a variety of animal fossils, including saber-toothed cats and antelopes. Berger and geologist Paul Dirks speculated that the animals might have fallen into a deep 100–150-foot death-trap, the bodies may have been swept into a pool of water with a sandy bottom and rich with lime, allowing the remains to become fossilized. The fossil was dated using a combination of palaeomagnetism and uranium-lead dating which showed that the fossils are no older than ~2.0 Ma, the presence of animal species which became extinct at ~1.5 Ma indicates the deposit is no younger than 1.5 Ma. The sediments have a normal polarity and the only major period between 2.0 and 1.5 Ma when this occurred is the Olduvai sub-Chron between 1.95 and 1.78 Ma. Accordingly, the fossils were dated to ~1.95 Ma.
Recent dating of a capping flowstone demonstrated this was not possible, the cusp spacing is more like Australopithecus. The femur and tibia are fragmentary, but the foot combines an advanced anklebone combined with a primitive heel and its cranial capacity is estimated at around 420–450 cm3, about one-third that of modern humans. A. sediba had a modern hand, whose precision grip suggests it might have been another tool-making Australopithecus. Evidence of the precision gripping and stone tool production can be seen from Homo-like features such as having a long thumb, the nearly complete wrist and hand of an adult female from Malapa, South Africa presents Australopithecus-like features, such as a strong flexor apparatus associated with arboreal locomotion
Gondolin Cave is a fossiliferous dolomitic paleocave system in the Northwest Province, South Africa. The paleocave formed in the Eccles Formation dolomites, Gondolin is currently the only described hominin-bearing fossil site in the Northwest Province-portion of the designated Cradle of Humankind UNESCO World Heritage Site. The cave is located on privately owned land and is not accessible to the public, as is the case with other South African Paleo-cave systems with Pliocene and/or Pleistocene fossil deposits, the system was mined for lime during the early 20th century. No records of the date of lime mining activities at Gondolin, long-term residents near Gondolin report that the system was mined prior to the 1950s. The cave was named after J. R. R, tolkiens Gondolin by the early 1970s. The first phase of excavation addressed the extremely fossiliferous in situ remnant deposits adhering to the wall of the cave system. The three week 1979 excavation removed approximately 2 m3 of calcified sediments from the cave wall.
The removed sediment blocks were organised into 43 blocks/trays and processed using acetic acid at the Transvaal Museum, a significant gap in research at Gondolin occurred in the 1980s, during which time all of the excavated blocks were processed. The first description of the fossil assemblage in 1993 only partially described 4,344 individual specimens that could be assigned to a specific taxonomic levels. In 1997 a survey of the sediments at Gondolin included the first sampling of the ex situ dumpsite deposits at the locality via a test trench. Materials removed from Trench A included fossiliferous breccia blocks from most, if not all, from this sampled material, two isolated hominin teeth were recovered. The first, GA1, is a worn and fractured left molar that has not been attributed to either genus or species (but resembles Homo in some features. In contrast, GA2 is a complete left m2 that has been analysed and attributed to Paranthropus robustus. The most recent excavations at Gondolin were undertaken in 2003 and 2004 to explore the largely decalcified GD1 deposits along the rim of the Gondolin locality. A four-week excavation season produced a sample of 4,863 fossil specimens from approximately 50 m3 of soil overburden, the original description of fossil specimens from the GD2 deposits only addressed a small portion of the assemblage.
A single hominin tooth that was thought to have been derived from the GD2 sampling was determined to be an intrusive modern Homo tooth. The first described occurrence of the extinct porcupine from an other than the Makapansgat Member 3 deposits. The first comprehensive analysis of a South African early Pleistocene assemblage solely derived from in situ deposits
University of Zurich
The University of Zurich, located in the city of Zürich, is the largest university in Switzerland, with over 26,000 students. It was founded in 1833 from the colleges of theology, medicine. Currently, the university has seven faculties, Human Medicine, Economic Sciences, Law and Natural Sciences, the university offers the widest range of subjects and courses of any Swiss higher education institution. It was the first university in Europe to be founded by the rather than a monarch or church. Eventually, the authorities offered Strauss a pension before he had a chance to start his duties, the university allowed women to attend philosophy lectures from 1847, and admitted the first female doctoral student in 1866. The Faculty of Veterinary Medicine was added in 1901, the second-oldest such faculty in the world, in 1914, the university moved to new premises designed by the architect Karl Moser on Rämistrasse 71. The university is scattered all over the city of Zurich, members of the university can use several libraries, including the ETH-library, and the Zurich Central Library, with over 5 million volumes.
In 1962, the faculty of science proposed to establish the Irchelpark campus on the Strickhofareal, the first stage the construction of the university buildings was begun in 1973, and the campus was inaugurated in 1979. The construction of the stage lasted from 1978 to 1983. The campus houses the anthropological museum Anthropologisches Museum, and the cantonal Staatsarchiv Zürich, the Institute and Museum for the History of Medicine is part of the university. The University of Zurich as a whole ranks in the top ten of Europe, notably in the fields of bioscience and finance, there is a close-knit collaboration between the University of Zurich and the ETH. Their faculty of medicine is six years. Shanghai Jiao Tong University Ranking 54th globally and 15th in Europe, THES – QS World University Rankings 61st globally and 14th in Europe. QS World University Rankings 2014 57th globally, professional Ranking of World Universities 32nd globally and 10th in Europe. University Ranking by Academic Performance 2010 52nd globally and 1st in Switzerland, according to Handelsblatt, the Department of Economics was ranked first in the German-speaking area and in 2009 the faculty of Business Administration was ranked third in the German-speaking area.
Bachelor courses are taught in Swiss Standard German, but use of English is increasing in many faculties, the only bachelors program taught entirely in English is the English Language and Literature program. All Master courses at the Faculty of Science are held in English, in some highly competitive and international programs, such as the Master of Science in Quantitative Finance, all lectures are held in English. Associated with the university are 12 Nobel Prize recipients, primarily in Physics, corpus Córporum, digital library created and maintained by the University’s Institute for Greek and Latin Philology
University of the Witwatersrand
The University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, is a multi-campus South African public research university situated in the northern areas of central Johannesburg. It is more known as Wits University. The university has its roots in the industry, as do Johannesburg. It was desegregated once again prior to the abolition of apartheid in 1990, several of apartheids most provocative critics, of either European or African descent, were one-time students and graduates of the university. The university has an enrolment of 33,711 students as of 2015,65 percent of the universitys total enrolment is for undergraduate study, with the remaining 35 percent being postgraduate. The university was founded in Kimberley in 1896 as the South African School of Mines, eight years later, in 1904, the school was moved to Johannesburg and renamed the Transvaal Technical Institute. The schools name changed yet again in 1906 to Transvaal University College, in 1908, a new campus of the Transvaal University College was established in Pretoria.
The Johannesburg and Pretoria campuses separated on 17 May 1910, each becoming a separate institution, in 1920, the school was renamed the University College, Johannesburg. Finally, on 1 March 1922, the University College, was granted university status after being incorporated as the University of the Witwatersrand. The Johannesburg municipality donated a site in Milner Park, north-west of Braamfontein, to the new institution as its campus and construction began the same year, on 4 October. True to Hofmeyrs words, from the outset Wits was a university with a policy of non-discrimination on racial or any other grounds. Initially, there were six faculties—Arts, Medicine, Engineering and Commerce—37 departments,73 academic staff, and approximately 1,000 students. In 1923, the university began moving into the new campus, slowly vacating its former premises on Ellof Street for the first completed building in Milner Park, in 1925, the Prince of Wales officially opened Central Block. The universitys first library, housed at the time in what was meant to be a construction, was destroyed in a fire on Christmas Eve in 1931.
Following this, an appeal was made to the public for ₤80,000 to pay for the construction of a new library, and this resulted in the fairly rapid construction of the William Cullen Library, completed in 1935. During this period, as the Great Depression hit South Africa, nonetheless, it continued to grow at an impressive rate. From a total enrolment of 2,544 students in 1939 and this growth led to accommodation problems, which were temporarily resolved by the construction of wood and galvanised-iron huts in the centre of the campus. During World War II, Wits was involved in South Africas war efforts, the Bernard Price Institute of Geophysical Research was placed under the Union of South Africas defence ministry, and was involved in important research into the use of radar
Armenia, officially the Republic of Armenia, is a sovereign state in the South Caucasus region of Eurasia. The Republic of Armenia constitutes only one-tenth of historical Armenia, Armenia is a unitary, multi-party, democratic nation-state with an ancient cultural heritage. Urartu was established in 860 BC and by the 6th century BC it was replaced by the Satrapy of Armenia, in the 1st century BC the Kingdom of Armenia reached its height under Tigranes the Great. Armenia became the first state in the world to adopt Christianity as its official religion, in between the late 3rd century to early years of the 4th century, the state became the first Christian nation. The official date of adoption of Christianity is 301 AD. The ancient Armenian kingdom was split between the Byzantine and Sasanian Empires around the early 5th century, under the Bagratuni dynasty, the Bagratid Kingdom of Armenia was restored in the 9th century. Declining due to the wars against the Byzantines, the fell in 1045. An Armenian principality and a kingdom Cilician Armenia was located on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea between the 11th and 14th centuries.
By the 19th century, Eastern Armenia had been conquered by the Russian Empire, during World War I, Armenians living in their ancestral lands in the Ottoman Empire were systematically exterminated in the Armenian Genocide. By 1920, the state was incorporated into the Transcaucasian Socialist Federative Soviet Republic, in 1936, the Transcaucasian state was dissolved, transforming its constituent states, including the Armenian Soviet Socialist Republic, into full Union republics. The modern Republic of Armenia became independent in 1991 during the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the Republic of Armenia recognises the Armenian Apostolic Church, the worlds oldest national church, as the countrys primary religious establishment. The unique Armenian alphabet was invented by Mesrop Mashtots in 405 AD, Armenia is a member of the Eurasian Economic Union, the Council of Europe and the Collective Security Treaty Organization. Armenia supports the de facto independent Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, which was proclaimed in 1991, the native Armenian name for the country is Հայք.
The name in the Middle Ages was extended to Հայաստան, by addition of the Persian suffix -stan, the further origin of the name is uncertain. It is postulated that the name Hay comes from one of the two confederated, Hittite vassal states—the Ḫayaša-Azzi. The exonym Armenia is attested in the Old Persian Behistun Inscription as Armina, the ancient Greek terms Ἀρμενία and Ἀρμένιοι are first mentioned by Hecataeus of Miletus. Xenophon, a Greek general serving in some of the Persian expeditions, describes many aspects of Armenian village life and he relates that the people spoke a language that to his ear sounded like the language of the Persians. According to the histories of both Moses of Chorene and Michael Chamchian, Armenia derives from the name of Aram, a descendant of Hayk
Homo naledi is an extinct species of hominin, which anthropologists first described in 2015 and have assigned to the genus Homo. In 2013, fossil skeletons were found in South Africas Gauteng province, in the Rising Star Cave system, as of 10 September 2015, fossils of at least fifteen individuals, amounting to over 1550 specimens, have been excavated from the cave. The skeletal anatomy presents ancestral features known from australopithecines with more recent features associated with hominins, the fossils have not been chronometrically dated, but estimates derived from statistical analysis of cranial traits have yielded a range of 2 million years to 912,000 years before present. The fossils were discovered by recreational cavers Rick Hunter and Steven Tucker in 2013, other experts contend more analyses are needed to support this classification. There are some indications that the individuals may have been placed in the cave near the time of their death. The word naledi means star in the Sotho language and it, and the corresponding name Dinaledi Chamber, were chosen to reference the Rising Star cave system where the fossils were found.
This chute led to a room 30 m underground, the surface of which was littered with fossil bones, before exploring the cave that day, the cavers had been asked by fellow caver and geologist Pedro Boshoff to let him know if they came across any fossils. On October 1,2013, photos were shown to Boshoff who recognized their significance, in total, over 1,550 pieces of bone belonging to at least fifteen individuals have been recovered from the clay-rich sediments. The layered distribution of the bones suggests that they had deposited over a long time. Only one square meter of the chamber has been excavated. Around 300 bone fragments were collected from the surface of the Dinaledi Chamber, the fossils include skulls, ribs, bones of an almost complete foot, of a hand, and of an inner ear. The bones of old and infants were found, the description of the new species was announced at a press conference on September 10,2015 held at Maropeng, Cradle of Humankind, South Africa. A display case of the fossils was unveiled during the ceremony and was subsequently on display to the public at Maropeng throughout September and October 2015, the University of the Witwatersrand is the curator of the fossils.
The skeletal anatomy displays plesiomorphic features found in the australopithecines and more apomorphic features known from hominins, adult males are estimated to have stood around 150 cm tall and weighed around 45 kg, while females would likely have been a little shorter and weighed a little less. An analysis of H. naledis skeleton suggests it stood upright and was bipedal and its hip mechanics, the flared shape of the pelvis are similar to australopithecines, but its legs and ankles are more similar to the genus Homo. The hands of H. naledi appear to have better suited for object manipulation than those of australopithecines. Some of the bones resemble modern human bones, and other bones are more primitive than Australopithecus, the thumb and palm bones are modern-like while the fingers are curved, more australopithecine, and useful for climbing. The shoulders are configured largely like those of australopithecines, the vertebrae are most similar to Pleistocene members of the genus Homo, whereas the ribcage is wide distally like A. afarensis
Phillip V. Tobias
Phillip Vallentine Tobias FRS was a South African palaeoanthropologist and Professor Emeritus at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg. He was best known for his work at South Africas hominid fossil sites and he was an activist for the eradication of apartheid and gave numerous anti-apartheid speeches at protest rallies and to academic audiences. In 1945, he started his career as demonstrator in histology and he received his Bachelor of Science in Histology and Physiology in 1946–1947. In 1948 he was elected the first President of the National Union of South African Students and he graduated in Medicine, Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery in 1950. He was appointed as a lecturer in anatomy in 1951, in 1953, he received his Doctor of Philosophy for a thesis entitled Chromosomes, Sex-Cells, and Evolution in the Gerbil. In 1955, Tobias started his research at the University of Cambridge, England. The following year, at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor and the University of Chicago, he was the Rockefeller Traveling Fellow in anthropology, human genetics, and dental anatomy and growth.
In 1959, he became Professor and Head of the Department of Anatomy and Human Biology, succeeding his mentor and eminent scholar, in 1967, he was awarded a Doctor of Science in palaeoanthropology for his work on hominid evolution. During this period he attended the University of the Witwatersrand and he was Dean of Medicine from 1980 to 1982. He was appointed Honorary Professor of Palaeoanthropology at the Bernard Price Institute for Palaeontological Research in 1977, in 1981, Tobias became a founding member of the World Cultural Council. Tobias excavated at the Sterkfontein caves and worked at almost all major sites in Southern Africa since 1945. He opened some 25 archaeological sites in Botswana during the French Panhard-Capricorn Expedition while conducting a survey of the Tonga People of Zimbabwe. He was one of the instrumental in unmasking the Piltdown fraud. His research has mainly in the fields of paleoanthropology and the human biology of Africas various populations. He has studied the Kalahari San, the Tonga people of Zambia and Zimbabwe and his best known work was on the hominids of East Africa, particularly those of the Olduvai Gorge.
Collaborating with Louis Leakey, Tobias identified and named the new species Homo habilis, Cambridge University Press published two volumes on the fossils of Homo habilis from the Olduvai Gorge. He is closely linked with the excavation at the Sterkfontein site. This site has yielded the largest single sample of Australopithecus africanus as well as the first known example of Homo habilis from Southern Africa and it is now a World Heritage Site
Robert Broom FRS FRSE was a Scottish South African doctor and paleontologist. He qualified as a practitioner in 1895 and received his DSc in 1905 from the University of Glasgow. He was born at 66 Back Sneddon Street in Paisley, the son of John Broom, a designer of prints and Paisley shawls. In 1893 he married Mary Baird Baillie, in his medical studies at the University of Glasgow Broom specialised in midwifery. After graduating in 1895 he travelled to Australia, supporting himself by practising medicine and he settled in South Africa in 1897, just prior to the South African War. From 1903 to 1910 he was professor of Zoology and Geology at Victoria College, Stellenbosch and he established a medical practice in the Karoo region of South Africa, an area rich in Therapsid fossils. Based on his studies of these fossils and mammalian anatomy he was made a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1920. He died in Pretoria in South Africa in 1951, Broom was first known for his study of mammal-like reptiles. After Raymond Darts discovery of the Taung Child, an infant australopithecine, Brooms career seemed over and he was sinking into poverty, when Dart wrote to Jan Smuts about the situation.
Smuts, exerting pressure on the South African government, managed to obtain a position for Broom in 1934 with the staff of the Transvaal Museum in Pretoria as an Assistant in Palaeontology, in 1937, Broom made his most famous discovery of Paranthropus robustus. These discoveries helped support Darts claims for the Taung species, the remainder of Brooms career was devoted to the exploration of these sites and the interpretation of the many early hominin remains discovered there. He continued to write to the very last, shortly before his death he finished a monograph on the Australopithecines and remarked to his nephew, Now thats finished. Broom was a nonconformist and was interested in the paranormal and spiritualism. Broom was a believer in spiritual evolution, in his book The Coming of Man, Was it Accident or Design. He claimed that spiritual agencies had guided evolution as animals and plants were too complex to have arisen by chance, according to Broom, there were at least two different kinds of spiritual forces, and psychics are capable of seeing them.
Broom claimed there was a plan and purpose in evolution and that the origin of Homo sapiens is the purpose behind evolution. According to Broom Much of evolution looks as if it had planned to result in man. After discovering the skull of Mrs. Ples, Broom was asked if he excavated at random, Broom replied that spirits had told him where to find his discoveries, the South Africa Fossil Ape-Men, The Australopithecinae
The Areni-1 cave complex is located near the Areni village in southern Armenia along the Arpa River. In 2010, it was announced that the earliest known shoe was found at the site, in January 2011, the earliest known winery in the world was announced to have been found. Also in 2011, the discovery of a straw skirt dating to 3900 BC was reported, in 2009, the oldest brain was discovered
Breccia is a rock composed of broken fragments of minerals or rock cemented together by a fine-grained matrix that can be similar to or different from the composition of the fragments. The word has its origins in the Italian language, in which it means either loose gravel or stone made by cemented gravel. A breccia may have a variety of different origins, as indicated by the named types including sedimentary breccia, tectonic breccia, igneous breccia, impact breccia, and hydrothermal breccia. Sedimentary breccia is a type of sedimentary rock which is made of angular to subangular. A conglomerate, by contrast, is a rock composed of rounded fragments or clasts of pre-existing rocks. Both breccia and conglomerate are composed of fragments averaging greater than 2 millimetres in size, the angular shape of the fragments indicates that the material has not been transported far from its source. Sedimentary breccia consists of angular, poorly sorted, immature fragments of rocks in a finer grained groundmass which are produced by mass wasting and it is lithified colluvium or scree.
Thick sequences of sedimentary breccia are generally formed next to fault scarps in grabens, Breccia may occur along a buried stream channel where it indicates accumulation along a juvenile or rapidly flowing stream. Sedimentary breccia may be formed by debris flows. Turbidites occur as fine-grained peripheral deposits to sedimentary breccia flows, in a karst terrain, a collapse breccia may form due to collapse of rock into a sinkhole or in cave development. Fault breccia results from the action of two fault blocks as they slide past each other. Subsequent cementation of these fragments may occur by means of the introduction of mineral matter in groundwater. Volcanic pyroclastic rocks are formed by explosive eruption of lava and any rocks which are entrained within the eruptive column and this may include rocks plucked off the wall of the magma conduit, or physically picked up by the ensuing pyroclastic surge. Lavas, especially rhyolite and dacite flows, tend to form volcanic rocks by a process known as autobrecciation.
This occurs when the thick, nearly solid lava breaks up into blocks, the resulting breccia is uniform in rock type and chemical composition. Lavas may pick up rock fragments, especially if flowing over unconsolidated rubble on the flanks of a volcano, within the volcanic conduits of explosive volcanoes the volcanic breccia environment merges into the intrusive breccia environment. There the upwelling lava tends to solidify during quiescent intervals only to be shattered by ensuing eruptions, clastic rocks are commonly found in shallow subvolcanic intrusions such as porphyry stocks and kimberlite pipes, where they are transitional with volcanic breccias. Intrusive rocks can become brecciated in appearance by multiple stages of intrusion and this may be seen in many granite intrusions where aplite veins form a late-stage stockwork through earlier phases of the granite mass
Paranthropus robustus is an early hominin, originally discovered in Southern Africa in 1938. Particularly regarding cranial features, the development of P. robustus seemed to be in the direction of a heavy-chewing complex, on account of the definitive traits associated with this robust line of australopithecine, anthropologist Robert Broom established the genus Paranthropus and placed this species in it. Paranthropus robustus is generally dated to have lived between 2.0 and 1.2 million years ago and it had large jaws and jaw muscles with the accompanying sagittal crest, and post-canine teeth that were adapted to serve in the dry environment they lived in. After Raymond Dart’s discovery of Australopithecus africanus, Broom was in favour of Darts claim that Australopithecus africanus was an ancestor of Homo sapiens, there was a great deal of skepticism and criticism from the academic community. Many claimed that Dart had been premature in naming the species, as the type specimen and it was thought that such important claims should be based on a full skeleton of an adult.
Robert Broom was a Scottish doctor working in South Africa who began making his own excavations in Southern Africa to find specimens of A. africanus. It was his intent to find complete adult skeletons that would justify the species designation of A. africanus, the fossils included parts of a skull and teeth, all dated to 2 million years old. Sites with fossils of Paranthropus robustus are found only in South Africa, in the cave at Swartkrans, the remains of 130 individuals were discovered. The study made on the dentition of the revealed that the average P. robustus rarely lived past 17 years of age. Paranthropus robustus was the first discovery of a robust species of hominin, it was well before P. boisei. These three species have alternately been in their own or placed within the genus Australopithecus and this is partly because in many small details, the species robustus resembles A. africanus more than it does either of the other robust species, aethiopicus or boisei. Brooms discovery was the second australopithecine after Australopithecus africanus, typical of robust australopithecines, P.
robustus had a head shaped a bit like a gorillas with a more massive built jaw and teeth in comparison to hominins within the Homo lineage. The sagittal crest that runs from the top of the acts as an anchor for large chewing muscles. The teeth of these primates were larger and thicker than any gracile australopithecine found, on the skull, a bony ridge is located above from the front to back indicating where the jaw muscles joined. P. robustus males may have stood only 1. 2m tall and weighed 54 kg while females stood just under 1 meter tall and weighed only 40 kg, the teeth found on P. robustus are almost as large as those of P. boisei. Broom analyzed his findings carefully and noted the differences in the molar teeth size which resembled a gorillas a bit more than a humans, other P. robustus remains have been found in Southern Africa. The average brain size of P. robustus measured to only 410 and 530 cc, some have argued that P robustus had a diet of hard gritty foods such as nuts and tubers since they lived in open woodland and savanna