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Paleoanthropology

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The paleoanthropology is the specialization of anthropology focused on the analysis of human evolution based on their fossil remains. Fossil records, therefore, are their main study material.

It's worth mentioning that paleontology is the science dedicated to studying fossil remains to meet the organisms that lived in the earth's past. That's why paleoanthropology is also often referred to as human paleontology.

The biology, the geology and archeology are other fields of knowledge that maintain a close link with paleoanthropology. Its techniques allow the search, analysis and interpretation of elements of humanity's past.

Paleoanthropology usually works with bone fossils: that is, with bone pieces that have been petrified for natural reasons. Anyway, you can also investigate fingerprints and get information from very old tools.

As for the birth of paleoanthropology, it's usually associated with the discovery of the fossil bones of the Neanderthal man in 1856. This finding in a quarry in a German valley allowed knowledge of a species of hominid different from Homo sapiens.

From then on, the study of fossil bones was progressing to constitute a specific branch of anthropology. Thanks to this discipline, it's possible to learn about the origin, evolution and extinction of past living beings, in addition to knowing the relationships they established with their environment and between them, how they were distributed on the earth's surface, their migrations and another questions.


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