Re: A. ramidus

Mon, 19 Dec 1994 06:15:12 GMT

In article <> (Murray E. Milligan) writes:

>Can anyone assist me in learning more about Tim White and the discovery
>of A. ramidus?

>I am a student of Anthropology and I came accross a brief article quoted
>from the Washinton Post.

See Nature vol 371, no 6495 (22 September 1994). In there you will find
the initial description by White, Suwa & Asfaw (p. 306), and the
palaeoecological assessment by WoldeGabriel, White, Suwa, Renne, de
Heinzelin, Hart and Heiken (p. 330). There is also commentary by Bernard
Wood on p. 280 about "the oldest hominid yet".

It is interesting that although there are some subtle hominid leanings
evident among the 17 fossil pieces, the <Australopithecus> referral is still
a bit dicey. It would be the only thin-enameled hominid (although they do
not say how thin "thin" may be). More evidence is needed to establish its
bipedality, although cranial base is suggestive of hominid affinities. But
it is too early to rule out the possibility of <Pan ramidus>. (One must
remember that nearly 70 years ago the Taung child was considered to be an
ape by Keith, Hrdlicka and others). There is no doubt that it is an
interesting and exceptionally important discovery.

Dr. Jeffrey K. McKee
Hominid Palaeoecology Research Programme
Department of Anatomy and Human Biology
University of the Witwatersrand Medical School
Johannesburg, Gauteng
Republic of South Africa