Lucy's Grandfather

Lucy was a creature known as Australopithecus afarensis that was once known as the oldest ancestor of humans. Archaeologists found her bones, and did testing that determined her age to be about 3.2 million years old. They have since found other bones of the same species that are older still.

One of the things Lucy is known for is her short stature of only about half the height of humans of today. But an even older specimen of the same species that was recently found seems to be about the same height as modern humans.

The new fossil of "Lucy's Grandfather" has been appropriately named Big Man. Other recent fossil finds of Australopithecus afarensis seem to suggest that Lucy's height is an unreliable measuring stick for their height. Big Man is the most conclusive evidence of this new theory yet.

Big Man's limbs seem to be made for running, unlike the shambling gait that Lucy would have. More like the limbs of Homo Erectus, which is from two million years later. Big Man's movements would not be out of place with today's humans.

It seems as if Australopithecus has even more similarities with modern humans, and they are much more like us than we previously suspected. Other human ancestors that have since been found seem to be more like humans as well. This creates many more questions. This all raises the thought that other Great Apes have evolved much more than humans have in the past few million years.

This is a very interesting look at our possible past. For more of this story you can visit this link: ‘Lucy’s Grandfather’ Fossil Makes Humanity’s Ancestor Seem More Like Us

Photo is from Wikimedia Commons. Check there for official copyright.

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  1. Went running to meet Meave Leakey when she was speaking about their African digs. Was dissappointed when she answered my question on how they pick helpers by saying only Havard Grad students came from the states.Love this stuff.


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