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Multi-regional Continuity: The Fossil Evidence Essay

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Multi-Regional Continuity: The Fossil Evidence

With regards to the multi-regional continuity model of human evolution, there is without a doubt a preponderance of fossil data that supports the diverse origins of Homo sapiens in different regions of the globe. Skulls displaying a wide variety of mixed modern and archaic features have been found in every corner of the world. The mere existence of these fossils is evidence enough to prove that human evolution was far less cut-and-dried a process than the advocates of the replacement model of human evolution would like to suggest, and, in fact, rather astonishingly complex.
It is useful before discussing the individual fossil
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(222). The occurence of this modern cranial capacity with other archaic traits in specimens consistent with a limited geographical setting suggests a local transition from primitive to more modern traits, as would be expected from the multi-regional continuity model of human evolution.
Crossing over the distance of two continents, the next fossil was recovered from a gravel pit in Swanscombe, England, and is believed to date from 250,000 years ago. The Swanscombe skull consists of an occipital bone and left and right parietals, all well-preserved (1987: 223-224). The cranial volume has been estimated at 1,275 to 1,325 cc., putting it well within the range of modern populations. There are some archaic features, however, as well. There is some indication of a heavy brow ridge, and the cranial walls are relatively thick (1987: 224). Also, the vault of the skull is low, further suggesting some sort of transitional between Homo erectus and Homo sapiens (1987: 224-225). Again, this mixture of modern and archaic features is very conveniently explained by the multi-regional continuity theory of human evolution.
Now, a shorter distance, to Arago Cave in France, for one of the more interesting and perhaps bizarre specimens to be presented in support of the multi-regional continuity model. The remains of at least twenty-three individuals comprise this sample, dating from about 190,000 to 180,000 years ago. The
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