Lucy and other members of her species, Australopithecus afarensis, lived between 3.9 and 3.0 million years ago.They are believed to be the most ancient common ancestor, or "stem" species, from which all later hominids sprang. Estimating the age of hominid fossils is usually a painstaking, two-part process, involving both "absolute" and "relative" dating.That means that the play was without fail written after (in Latin, post) 1587.The same inductive mechanism is applied in archaeology, geology and paleontology, by many ways.During the latter half of this century anthropological surveys in East Africa have made significant contributions to understanding how the human species has evolved.In the past two decades, particularly, discoveries of our fossil ancestors have been made in unprecedented numbers and diversity.
Since the time of separation of the evolutionary lines of apes and humans about 5 million years ago, some fossil specimens of the skeletal remains of our earliest ancestors have been preserved and discovered.Putting together the pieces of the puzzle of human biological history is the task of paleontologists, geologists and anthropologists.In this room we explore how these scientists can reconstruct the past from their studies of the geological contexts in which fossils are found, the dating of the specimens, their comparative anatomy with extinct and living species of our taxonomic order, the Primates, and the lifeways and behavior patterns of the first members of the human family within the Primates.(Any remnant of the past, not just bones, can be considered a fossil.) 3.6 million years ago, a volcano now called Sadiman puffed out a cloud of ash that blanketed the surrounding area.A light rain then turned the ash into a sort of cement that recorded thousands of tracks of antelopes, rhinos, guinea fowl, and monkeys, as well as the footprints of our ancestors.
"Relative" dating involves comparing one object to others to build a chronology.