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Humans Had Sex Regularly With Mysterious Extinct Relatives in Africa - Comments

aquilacane's Avatar Comment 1 by aquilacane

We've been hiding our shame ever since

Mon, 05 Sep 2011 22:41:04 UTC | #867652

Layla's Avatar Comment 2 by Layla

How do the religious explain the other types of humans that used to exist such as Neanderthals? Did they have souls? How do they fit into God's plan and the idea of humanity as having a special place at the centre of God's creation? And which type of human is made in God's image?

I wonder how many different types of humans there were coexisting at one time in history. Was there ever a planet of the humans type era where you could have found many different kinds of humans all over the place?

Maybe the typical science fiction portrayal of a universe full of aliens all of whom are just human beings with slight differences in character and appearance is actually closer akin to our ancient history than our future.

Mon, 05 Sep 2011 22:44:16 UTC | #867653

jackashflash's Avatar Comment 3 by jackashflash

I would tap that too.

Comment 2 by Layla :

How do the religious explain the other types of humans that used to exist such as Neanderthals?

Easy...they didnt exists, or claim they are just monkeys.

Mon, 05 Sep 2011 22:45:01 UTC | #867654

Layla's Avatar Comment 4 by Layla

Comment 3 by jackashflash

Easy...they didnt exists, or claim they are just monkeys.

What about the ones who accept evolution?

Mon, 05 Sep 2011 23:05:48 UTC | #867666

jackashflash's Avatar Comment 5 by jackashflash

Comment 4 by Layla :

Comment 3 by jackashflash

Easy...they didnt exists, or claim they are just monkeys.

What about the ones who accept evolution?

Well I guess it depends on to what extent they "believe" it....

If they believe it completely, then they have an unusual ability to ignore the contradiction between faith and science. Sort of like a geologist who believes in a young earth. Some theists actually only believe in micro-evolution within bacteria.

Mon, 05 Sep 2011 23:22:16 UTC | #867673

Neodarwinian's Avatar Comment 6 by Neodarwinian

Good question, Layla, but I think the catholics would say god chose us ( H. sapiens ) for himself. Or however that pope-ish acceptance of evolution went.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 00:16:08 UTC | #867689

drumdaddy's Avatar Comment 7 by drumdaddy

Well I'll be a monkey's uncle!

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 01:58:51 UTC | #867723

QuestioningKat's Avatar Comment 8 by QuestioningKat

I find this interesting. I was wondering if more extinct lineages will be found in the future. I wouldn't be surprised.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 02:05:58 UTC | #867731

ballsgoodman's Avatar Comment 9 by ballsgoodman

I don't know, i just like Denisovans cuz they're cute and exotic looking.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 02:42:20 UTC | #867744

cornbread_r2's Avatar Comment 10 by cornbread_r2

From the article:

The length of the exotic haplotypes from this extinct lineage suggests interbreeding might still have occurred until as recently as 35,000 years ago.

If that's true, I wonder why they haven't found fossil evidence of them, or if Homo sapiens sapiens fossils haven't been mistaken for these unknown humans.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 04:25:34 UTC | #867765

JackCooper5's Avatar Comment 11 by JackCooper5

Interesting. I've always wondered about how Neanderthals and Humans would interact if they co-existed today.

Going by the way our species has treated "inferiors" in the past, basically making slaves out of all supposed inferior races we come across. I can only imagine the treatment we might be dishing out to Neanderthals if they were alive now (or back when we co-existed).

Would the simple fact that we share such a recent common ancestor make us any more likely to treat them with rights? Our track record says the time between common ancestors doesn't really make any difference to the rights that creature gets. Most pet dogs get more rights than African slaves did in colonial America. And we're the same species!

I can't help but assume those Neanderthal women were taken advantage of, it wouldn't surprise me if they were early sex slaves.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 05:50:54 UTC | #867772

rjohn19's Avatar Comment 12 by rjohn19

If artists' renderings are to be trusted at all, I feel a bit queasy thinking my ancestors were, to put it kindly, such democrats when it came to sex. In my youth, I'll confess I had some lapses in taste but at least I had scotch and soda along to shoulder a portion of the blame.

But I'm reasonably certain I was never quite tanked enough to cross species lines. Had some orangutan disturbed my morning bleary by bringing me breakfast in bed, I would not have allowed myself to live to the age at which I write this.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 06:03:26 UTC | #867773

justinesaracen's Avatar Comment 13 by justinesaracen

Guess who came to dinner, eh?

It seems to me that if another 'species' looked a lot like you, and you were a randy male, you might not have any reservations about giving it a go.

Think of the visible differences between humans from various ethnic groups not to mention the modern variations in human body types. Hairy old Saddam Hussein on one end of the spectrum and a tiny Japanese girl on the other end. So I'm guessing that when you're 18 and horny, the strange females your tribe just captured might be looking very screwable, even if they do grunt more than you do and you wouldn't want to bring them home to your parents' campfire.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 07:47:24 UTC | #867786

DavidMcC's Avatar Comment 14 by DavidMcC

The irony of the picture in the [Neanderthals Had Sex With Humans] article is that it makes it look as if the Neanderthal was the "African". The reality was that WE were the Africans when we encountered Neanderthals.

EDIT: It is also worth remembering that recent papers on Neanderthal-modern human interbreeding get the date by an invalid application of the genetic clock. They tried to use it on actual gene codig sequences. This gives highly unreliable results. Only "junk DNA" sequences can give a meaningful date, because they are not subject to selection based on the sequence. I put it down to the breakdown of the peer-review system.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 08:08:20 UTC | #867790

Sjoerd Westenborg's Avatar Comment 15 by Sjoerd Westenborg

Apparantly Neanderthalers didn't have a good chance of surviving in the long run even if they didn't have competition., I'm glad a small part of their heritage lives on in Homo Sapiens Sapiens, though I imagine that was not their main concern when they encountered us.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 10:54:02 UTC | #867832

ghost of numf-el's Avatar Comment 16 by ghost of numf-el

I guess some people will shag anything that looks even barely human :-)

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 11:12:55 UTC | #867840

Reckless Monkey's Avatar Comment 17 by Reckless Monkey

After reading about Australia's convict past I learned that there was a lot of sheep shagging going on in the outback in those days (information that would have made me pay more attention in history at school if they'd chosen to share it with us). So it's hardly surprising that we'd have a fairly wide tolerance. I think its kinda nice to think we didn't just wipe them out but brought them along for the ride so to speak. Real spirit of evolution.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 12:01:10 UTC | #867855

Rawhard Dickins's Avatar Comment 18 by Rawhard Dickins

Some people have all the luck!

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 12:51:18 UTC | #867868

mmurray's Avatar Comment 19 by mmurray

Comment 17 by Reckless Monkey :

After reading about Australia's convict past I learned that there was a lot of sheep shagging going on in the outback in those days (information that would have made me pay more attention in history at school if they'd chosen to share it with us).

You're getting us confused with New Zealand :-)

So it's hardly surprising that we'd have a fairly wide tolerance. I think its kinda nice to think we didn't just wipe them out but brought them along for the ride so to speak. Real spirit of evolution.

Unless we killed the males and raped the women. That would be our usual style. I wonder if you can rule this out with DNA somehow?

Michael

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 13:06:57 UTC | #867873

LaurieB's Avatar Comment 20 by LaurieB

ghost of numf-el

Who says the object of their affection needs to look even "barely human"? Some modern men seem willing to have sex outside their species (think farm guys) and even willing to have sex with inanimate objects (plastic dolls, socks, ect). In light of this, sex with Neanderthals and Denisovans seems downright conventional.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 14:36:18 UTC | #867897

old-toy-boy's Avatar Comment 21 by old-toy-boy

Comment 1 by aquilacane

We've been hiding our shame ever since.

That is why we had to leave Africa.

(anyone else notice the red star in the sky?)

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 17:24:34 UTC | #867939

KABOOM's Avatar Comment 22 by KABOOM

I am curious about the likely "mating dynamics" that gave rise to this and was wondering if the DNA evidence could illuminate:

I guess that we don't know when male/female "pairing up" (for lack of a better term started) but given the long term investment in child-rearing it is thought that the biological father would for the most part "provide" for raising his offspring and probably, if a boy, groom him to hunt and gather and be a productive member of the group. So homo sapien women were part of a group, probably paired up with a male, although things may have been quite a bit looser than the modern husband/wife roles. Presumably, Neanderthals may have had similar male/female roles, although apparently their offspring reached maturity quicker so not as long invested in rearing children.

So with that backdrop, I am curious as to how the mating occurred?

If HS males would occassionally get "horny" and knock up a Neanderthal women, then the result of that union would still be a child born to a Neanderthal women who was living as part of a Neanderthal group. Presumably, since some of the DNA survived the offspring were not condemned to death, but were raised to maturity. However, if this were always a "one-way street" (HS male having sex (I'll put aside whether such sex was concensual or not but just note that things were a lot more "animalistic" back then) with a Neanderthal female), then as the Neanderthals eventually died out then so to would have any of the "shared DNA".

So does that suggest that Neanderthal males must have had regular sex with HS females? Similarly, the offspring of which, although not looking like normal HS babies, must have been willing raised as members of the HS band of hunters and gatherers.

Any insight or useful speculation on this would be welcomed.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 18:00:44 UTC | #867950

Corylus's Avatar Comment 23 by Corylus

Nephilim, yep, that's the answer.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 18:10:42 UTC | #867955

mlgatheist's Avatar Comment 24 by mlgatheist

Layla ,

Regarding comment #2.

Those other species must have missed the boat. (get it?)

We as a species do not seem to completely be against interspecies sex.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 18:40:46 UTC | #867963

LaurieB's Avatar Comment 25 by LaurieB

KABOOM

If you're interested in learning more about human mating strategies I can recommend the book The Red Queen by Matt Ridley. For a facinating account of female mating strategies I recommend Mother Nature by Sarah Hrdy. After that, try Sperm Wars by Robin Baker. The combination of these three books will demolish any quaint notions you have left of wholesome monogamous couples strolling hand in hand along the rift valley on the way to gather some tasty tubers to feed their 2.5 happy-go-lucky offspring.

Consider the following: Female fertility phase completely hidden - even to females themselves.

Male testicular size relative to other primates

"mushroom cap" shape of penis

Human sexual dimorphism

The Koran and the Bible both give instructions to men on how to divide the spoils of war (raiding another tribe) and the spoils most definitely include females of the defeated tribe.

Read about Patriarchal societies and patrilocal tribes in any intro to Anthropology text.

I'm not claiming that there was no consensual sex since it was and is in the best interest of females to keep fertility a secret from men and to create ambiguity as to the paternity of her offspring in order to access the resources of any number of men. But there can't be doubt about the reproductive strategy of men being the desire to impregnate as many females as possible either by their consent or by rape. We know that tribal raiding was common as was theft and rape of the women they conquered . Shouldn't we assume that all three of these groups would raid each other on a regular basis and steal each others territory, women and every other resource that they coveted? Where exactly the monogamous couple fits into this scene escapes me.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 20:59:37 UTC | #867989

ridelo's Avatar Comment 26 by ridelo

I read Neanderthals died off about 35.000 years ago. I guess that's because we have no younger remains of them. But, given the scarcity of fossils, isn't it possible that they have survived much longer in dispersed, not yet discovered pockets? Maybe we'll find their remnants someday so that it becomes plausible that they were the giants from the fairy tales. Or the Nephilim like I read here. Goliath, the last Neanderthal! What a story.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 21:03:49 UTC | #867992

phil rimmer's Avatar Comment 27 by phil rimmer

And still it goes on, more shameful than before. Even now there are some sick bastards, having sex with Republicans!

You know who you are! No good will come of it. The species has split. Get over it.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 21:28:14 UTC | #867996

KenChimp's Avatar Comment 28 by KenChimp

Comment 20 by LaurieB :

ghost of numf-el

Who says the object of their affection needs to look even "barely human"? Some modern men seem willing to have sex outside their species (think farm guys) and even willing to have sex with inanimate objects (plastic dolls, socks, ect). In light of this, sex with Neanderthals and Denisovans seems downright conventional.

Oh sure! Blame it all on us guys why don't you?!

Sure there are plastic dolls, socks.....socks?!?!?!, um and other stuff, but there are also plenty o' auto-erotic devices for females to enjoy as well!

And outside the species? sigh Have a little cuddle time with a sheep and women just never forgive a fella.

;-D

Sorry. I had to. Naughty Monkey here.

Tue, 06 Sep 2011 21:50:26 UTC | #868006

delogren's Avatar Comment 29 by delogren

First, anyone who thinks Neanderthals don't walk among us never saw my high school football coach... Sloping brow... Prognathic.... Dull witted and brutal.... But seriously folks.....

Isn't the definition of speciation when two populations can no longer interbreed and produce fertile offspring? Doesn't this new DNA evidence simply show us that we've been one species for longer than the Archaeologists, Taxonomists, Paleontologists and ethnocentrists want to admit?

Proud to be a monkey's nephew... --del

Wed, 07 Sep 2011 00:20:35 UTC | #868054

Vicar of Art on Earth's Avatar Comment 30 by Vicar of Art on Earth

Fora TV had a lecture from the Max Planck Institute on Neanderthals which made the point that these post homo erectus folks could be of different breeds and the cross mating happened early in the last migration out of Africa in the near east. This did take into account the great difference in skull shape which is common in different breeds of dogs who have different abilities. Basset Hounds hunt by smelling and behave differently, developed before guns in the early Middle Ages to work with a walking human and pugs which were genetically developed to be cute. Same species, very different skulls, body types and aptitudes.

Neanderthals had short stocky bodies to retain heat and the African Sapians were long, lanky and breed for a big forhead.

Before us non believers get to entranced with our African line, it seems they were the ones to bring art and religion into Eurasia. Neanderthals seem to have adopted body or corpse decoration along with some tool kits only after the Africans got there.

It seems we are not only very adaptable culturally, but genetically.

Yes in biblical and non biblical judeo-christian myth there are several other species, children of Adams first wife Lilth, children of angels and women, and giants. I have speculated the in European myths other species live on, races of dwarfs, giants, little people who hide, and ogers.

Wed, 07 Sep 2011 04:45:45 UTC | #868110