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§Homo sapiens expansion

Following a migration out of Africa around 100,000 years ago and possibly held back by a bottleneck in population which could be attributed to the theory of the Toba catastrophe, it is thought that around 50,000 years ago that there was a new significant homo sapiens expansion.

An astonishing amount of discoveries have been made which date to this period, astonishing considering the comparatively static number of expansion discoveries dating in the 50,000 years previous.

Some scientists believe that the trading of stone materials between populations took place, and that this trade could have stretched to distances of hundreds of kilometres. They also believe that there was a notable advancement in the type of tools that homo sapiens produced such as multi-component weapons. An example of a multi component weapon of this era would be a stone spearhead attached to a wooden spear shaft.

Other human developments regarded from this era include the use of textiles and baskets, and organised campsite dwellings with underground food storage areas.

It is believed that homo sapiens which had reached the Middle East went onto explore and expand into the Indian subcontinent and South East Asia. From here it is believed that some migrations pushed forward into China and Japan, whilst others traveled across Indonesia and onto north Australia. Indonesia was thought to have been a landmass attached to Asia, but it is believed that the journey onto Australia would have required maritime skills as it would have only been accessible by sea travel. The Australian populations would come to be known as Aboriginal Australians when they were discovered by Europeans in the 18th Century. Their presence in the north of Australia is identified by artwork at Ubirr. (see 40Kyr)

Anybody who studies theories regarding human global expansion based on discoveries will find a number of dates in time applied to particular migrations making it very difficult to apply more specific dates.

It would be feasible to suggest that homo sapiens would have encountered homo erectus in southern Asia and homo neanderthalensis in western Asia during these migrations.

§Of World Interest

About 43,000 BCE one of two distinct species of woolly mammoths went extinct according to DNA evidence from mammoth hair samples.

Human migration to South Asia. M168 mutation (carried by all non-African males). Beginning of the Upper Paleolithic. mt-haplogroups U, K.


Upper Paleolithic Neanderthals (approximately 130,000 to 45,000) - Upper Paleolithic Neanderthals sites include: Krapina, Saccopastore, Malarnaud, Altamura, Gánovce, Denisova, Okladnikov, Pech de l'Azé, Tabun, Kebara, Régourdou, Mt. Circeo, La Ferrassie, Combe Grenal, La Chapelle, Amud, Shanidar, Teshik-Tash, and Feldhofer.

According to a study published in Nature (Jan 2015), the first interbreeding between humans and Neanderthals may have taken place in what is now Israel. Scientists report the discovery of a 55,000-year-old modern human skull in a cave in western Galilee. Named "Manot," the skull represents the first human remains pinpointed to that time and location -- when Neanderthals are known to have been present.


Since arrow heads were discovered in Africa, the historians have presumed that the bow and arrow were invented there at around 50,000 BCE


Paleolithic chert mines of Nazlet Sabaha (or Safaha), a site on the western banks of the Nile River in Egypt. Evidence suggests mining was going on at least 50,000 years ago; the Guinness register pushes the date back to the vicinity of 100,000 years



Excavation of prehistoric sites by Louis Dupree, the University of Pennsylvania, the Smithsonian Institute and others suggests that humans were living in what is now Afghanistan at least 50,000 years ago, and that farming communities of the area were among the earliest in the world.


Sometime from 50,000 years ago during the Upper Palaeolithic, homo sapiens discovered and occupied the Zhoukoudian Caves near today's Beijing, which are believed to have also been an earlier homo erectus settlement.


The stone age in India from approximately 70,000 BCE to 7000 BCE.



Bacho Kiro cave in the modern day Gabrovo Province contain human remains which are yet to be firmly attributed to homo neanderthalensis or homo sapiens.


Cave dwellers left wild date seeds along with evidence of pine nuts, walnuts, acorns, chestnuts etc. in the Shanidar Cave located in Northern Iraq.

§South Pacific


Scientists believe that from the period around 400,000 BCE giant marsupials, kangaroos and wombats, roamed the outback. They went extinct around 50,000 BCE coincident with the arrival of humans on the continent.

Researchers from the University of Adelaide analyzed the oldest evidence of Aboriginal occupation in South Australia. While people have reached the Australian territory roughly 50,000 years ago, it was unclear whether they actually remained there to occupy it or simply migrated toward another place.


Homo floresiensis is known to have lived on Flores until as recently as 54,000 years ago.


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Page last modified on April 21, 2017, at 03:26 PM