Class 12 Biology Evolution Origin and evolution of man

Origin and evolution of man

The stages of evolution of man are-

1. Dryopithecus and Ramapithecus-

  • About 15 mya, primates called Dryopithecus and Ramapithecus were existing.
  • They were hairy and walked like gorillas and chimpanzees.
  • Ramapithecus was more man-like while Dryopithecus was more ape-like.
  • Few fossils of man-like bones have been discovered in Ethiopia and Tanzania.
  • These revealed hominid features leading to the belief that about 3-4 mya, man-like primates walked in eastern Africa.

Fig. Dryopithecus  

Fig. Ramapithecus  

2. Australopithecus-

  • About two mya, Australopithecines probably lived in East African grasslands.
  • They hunted with stone weapons but essentially ate fruit.
  • Some of the bones among the bones discovered were different.
  • They were intermediate between apes and man.

Fig. Australopithecus  

3. Homo habilis-

  • The brain capacities were between 650-800cc.
  • They probably did not eat meat.
  • They were the makers of stone tools.

Fig. Homo habilis  

4. Homo erectus-

  • About 1.5 mya, Homo erectus arose.
  • Homo erectus had a large brain around 900cc.
  • Homo erectus probably ate meat.

Fig. Homo erectus 

5. Neanderthal man-

  • The Neanderthal man with a brain size of 1400cc lived in near east and central Asia between 1, 00,000-40,000 years back.
  • They used hides to protect their body and buried their dead.

Fig. Neanderthal man  


6. Homo sapiens or modern man-

  • Arose in Africa and moved across continents.
  • During ice age between 75,000-10,000 years ago modern Homo sapiens arose.
  • Pre-historic cave art developed about 18,000 years ago.
  • Agriculture came around 10,000 years back and human settlements started.

Fig. Homo sapiens   

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