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Temporal range: Pliocene - present
Skull of Homo neanderthalensis
Scientific classification

Hominina is a sub-tribe of the hominid primates. It is used by some anthropologists to include the upright biped apes, including the genus Homo.

If an anthropologist wants to includes chimpanzees in the tribe Hominini, then it follows that a sub-tribe is needed to put Australopithecines and humans in. But this is not a majority view at present, and the mainstream view is:

If used, the group includes Sahelanthropus six to eight million years ago.

Taxonomy[change | change source]

Even today, the genus Homo has not been properly defined.[1][2][3]

Because there was no reason to think it would ever have any additional members, Carl Linnaeus did not even bother to define Homo when he first created it for humans in the 18th century. The discovery of Neanderthals brought the first addition.

A model of the evolution of the genus Homo over the last 2 million years (vertical axis). The rapid "Out of Africa" expansion of H. sapiens is indicated at the top of the diagram, with admixture indicated with Neanderthals, Denisovans, and unspecified archaic African hominins.[4]

The genus Homo was given its taxonomic name to suggest that its member species can be classified as human.

Over the decades of the 20th century, there were fossil finds of pre-human and early human species from late Miocene and early Pliocene times.

Classifying a fossil as Homo means evidence of:

  1. competent human bipedalism in Homo habilis inherited from the earlier Australopithecus of more than four million years ago, (see Laetoli);
  2. human tool culture having begun by 2.5 million years ago.

References[change | change source]

  1. Schwartz, Jeffrey H.; Tattersall, Ian (28 August 2015). "Defining the genus Homo". Science. 349 (6251): 931–932. Bibcode:2015Sci...349..931S. doi:10.1126/science.aac6182. PMID 26315422. S2CID 206639783. Retrieved 2015-11-02.
  2. Lents, Nathan (4 October 2014). "Homo naledi and the Problems with the Homo Genus". The Wildernist. Archived from the original on 2015-11-18. Retrieved 2015-11-02.
  3. Wood, B.; Collard, M. (2 April 1999). "The human genus". Science. 284 (5411): 65–71. Bibcode:1999Sci...284...65.. doi:10.1126/science.284.5411.65. PMID 10102822. Retrieved 2015-11-03.
  4. Stringer, C. (2012). "What makes a modern human". Nature. 485 (7396): 33–35. doi:10.1038/485033a. PMID 22552077. S2CID 4420496.