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Human Evolution Pictures
Charles Darwin, an English naturalist, is widely known as the father of evolution. His groundbreaking book, "On the Origin of Species," was published in 1859 and contained his theories about different evolutionary theories. Next, see how one human ancestor might have died.
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In 2006, paleoanthropologist Lee Berger said that his research led him to conclude that the Taung child, the 3- or 4-year-old Australopithecus africanus child that lived nearly two million years ago, was likely killed by an eagle. Another ancient hominid skull is up next.
Image Credit: AP Photo/Denis Farrell
This is the skull of Homo habilis, a species that lived around two million years ago. Home habilis was probably the hominid species least like modern humans, as individuals were short and had disproportionately long arms. Next, see a model of a famous ancient hominid.
Image Credit: AP Photo/Matthias Rietschel
The skeleton of Lucy, the 3.2-million-year-old Australopithecus afarensis, whose fossilized remains are among the most famous in archaeology, was found in Ethiopia in 1974. This three-dimensional model represents what she might have looked like all those years ago. Want to see an actual skeleton? Click to the next page.
Image Credit: AP Photo/Pat Sullivan
At the Hall of Human Origins at the American Museum of Natural History, you can learn about human evolution over the course of the past six million years. This human skeleton is just one example of the many hominids in our history. Next up, see another cool museum specimen.
Image Credit: AP Photo/Dima Gavrysh
In 1953, at the Natural History Museum in London, guests could visit this display of a reconstruction of the famous Piltdown Skull. Originally accepted as evidence of the "missing link" between ape and man since 1912, the skull was found to be a hoax after testing in 1953.
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It's easy to spot differences between hominid species when you can compare skulls side by side. Here are two examples: a Neanderthal skull on the left and a Cro-Magnon skull on the right. Want to see even more skulls? Check out the next picture.
Image Credit: AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin
Pictured at Nairobi's National Museum in Kenya in 2006, this collection of fossilized skulls is believed to show the evolution of man, starting from man's earliest existence millions of years ago. What can small birds tell us about evolution? Find out next.
Image Credit: LILLIAN OMARIBA/AFP/Getty Images
Charles Darwin collected finches from the Galapagos Islands on a trip there in 1835. While traveling home, Darwin realized that his collection was made up of different but closely related species of finch, which led him to formulate the principle of natural selection. Next up, see an ancient hominid leg bone.
Image Credit: AP Photo/ B. Rosemary Grant
This tibia, which was discovered in the Afar region of Ethiopia in 2005, is from the lower leg of what scientists believe is mankind's first walking ancestor, a hominid that lived nearly four million years ago. A variety of other bones were also found at the site. See a skeleton discovered by a child next.
Image Credit: AP Photo/Anthony Mitchell
Matthew Berger, a 9-year-old South African boy and the son of a Wits University scientist, was in a newly discovered cave when he found the fossils of a new hominid species that lived 1.95 million years ago. The fossils were named Australopithecus sediba. What does a typical cave excavation site look like? See one on the next page.
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In 2003, an 18,000-year-old dwarf female Homo floresiensis skeleton was found in this cave excavation site in Indonesia. The female stood at a height of just over 3 feet (1 meter) and was estimated to be around 30 years old when she died. Next, see a modern-day primate.
Image Credit: AP Photo/Achmad Ibrahim
As primates, chimpanzees are our relatives. But what happens to chimps that are retired from medical research? Under the U.S. CHIMP Act, they are entitled to long-term care and should be cared for at a chimpanzee sanctuary with a habitat similar to their natural outdoor one. But are chimps our closet primate relatives? Find out more on the next page.
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Does this orangutan look familiar? In the summer of 2009, a controversial study made the claim that orangutans, and not chimpanzees, are the closest living relatives of humans. The debate has not yet been settled. Next up, see one theory of how man evolved.
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Those who still hold fast to the idea that men evolved from apes might appreciate this representation. This digital rendering shows man's evolution in four stages, progressing from ape to human. Next, see a tiny sample of an ancient hominid foot.
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This 60.99-millimeter human metatarsal bone was found in 2007 at Callao Cave in the northern Philippines. The ancient foot bone was determined to be approximately 67,000 years old. See another small specimen on the next page.
Image Credit: AP Photo/Bullit Marquez
These two pieces of an upper jawbone come from a prehistoric anthropoid ape, the Anapithecus hernyaki. The origin of this mysterious species of ape is yet unknown, but it is thought that it lived around 10 million years ago. Next, see a slightly more recent jawbone.
Image Credit: AP Photo/MTI
A small piece of jawbone, found in a cave in Spain in 2007, is the oldest known fossil of a human ancestor in Europe. At 1.3 million years old, it suggests people lived on the continent much earlier than originally thought. Where have the oldest animal fossils been discovered? Find out on the next page.
Image Credit: AP Photo/Israel L. Murillo
Princeton geoscientist Adam Maloof holds a rock from South Australia that may contain the oldest fossils of animal bodies ever discovered. The fossils, which are the red shapes seen here, suggest that sponge-like animals existed about 650 million years ago. Next, see how different human conditions can help us understand evolution.
Image Credit: Princeton University Office of Comm./Adam Maloof
In the 1950s, someone with microcephaly might have been a circus attraction. However, today, this neurodevelopmental disorder, which causes a person's head to be smaller than average, provides insight into human brain evolution. Next, check out the building blocks of evolution.
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Chromosomes are the building blocks of every living creature and can help us understand evolution. Each human has 46 chromosomes -- 23 from his or her mother and 23 from his or her father. Chromosomes are made of protein and a single molecule of DNA. On the next page, you'll see how the human genome helps researchers learn more about evolution.
Image Credit: iStockphoto.com/Liang Zhang
Using the genome sequencer shown in this laboratory, researchers were at work in 2006 on a "first draft" of the Neanderthal genome. Decoding the human genome has opened the door to all manner of comparative species research. How do we picture people of the past? Click to the next page to see one model.
Image Credit: AP Photo
It's difficult to know exactly what people of the past looked like, but this is one model that some believe may be close. Using bones and fossils, scientists can make some assumptions of how certain features would have looked. See a spooky skull photo next.
Image Credit: AP Photo/ Martin Meissner
This skull of a Neanderthal woman was found in a cave in the Balkan Mountains. A 2008 theory suggests that cannibalism wiped out the hominid race. Next, see how Neanderthal people may have looked in everyday life.
Image Credit: Kenneth Garrett/National Geographic/Getty Images
No showers meant a different type of hygiene for people of the past. Depicted in this illustration at around 30,000 B.C., these Neanderthal people would likely have smelled pretty ripe. Now that you've checked out our human evolution pictures, check out our list of
10 things we've learned about humans by studying primates
Image Credit: Time Life Pictures/Mansell/Time Life Pictures/Getty Images
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