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Hobbit find shows tiny humans shrank 'rapidly' [Copy link] 中文

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Post time 2016-6-10 18:03:17 |Display all floors

Scientists have discovered the 700,000-year-old ancestor of the tiny primitive human known as "the Hobbit".

Its fossils indicate that the normal-sized primitive humans who first set foot on the Indonesian island of Flores shrank "rapidly" to become Hobbit-sized.

The remains are of at least one adult and two children, who are all just as small as their descendents.

A paper in the journal Nature details the latest findings.

The Hobbit's discovery in a cave on Flores created a sensation 12 years ago. Just a metre in height (hence the affectionate nickname), it was initially thought they could have been living as recently as 12,000 years ago.

Subsequent analysis has shown they actually existed slightly further back in time, between 50,000 and 60,000 years ago - not that this lessened the fascination with the diminutive species more properly called Homo floresiensis.

And now comes new research from some of the scientists involved in the original discovery that reveals insights on the Hobbit's lineage.

The team presents much older fossils, dating back 700,000 years, unearthed at a site named Mata Menge.

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