Describe the theories that explain the origin of mankind.
- The Creation Theory. This presents man and everything else as having been created by God. It is contained mainly in the Bible (used by Christians) and the Quran (used by Muslims). The theory further states that God gave man authority to control the earth in all ways.
- The Mythical (traditional) Theory. This is an attempt by individuals or communities of people to explain their origin. It is given through Oral Traditions, myths and legends. It mainly states that the first people were created by God.
- The Evolution Theory, which states that all living organisms resulted from a natural process of gradual and continuous change from a lower (simpler) state to a better-adapted (complex) and superior one. The Evolution Theory was advanced by Charles Darwin in 1859.
Identify two illustrations/examples of the Mythical (Traditional) theory.
- According to the Agikuyu, God (Ngai) appeared and created their ancestors (Gikuyu and Mumbi) at Mukurwe Wa Gathanga.
- According to the Nandi, the first two people came from the knees of a giant man, which began to swell until they burst. A man came from one knee and a woman from the other. These became the ancestors of the Nandi-speaking people of Kenya. This is an example of myths in certain communities that do not directly refer to God‟s creation.
EVOLUTION OF MAN
What is evolution?
Evolution is a natural process of gradual and continuous change of living organisms from a lower (simpler) state to a better-adapted (complex) and superior one.
Identify four distinct stages in which evolution took place according to Charles Darwin.
- natural selection,
State the principles of Natural Selection.
- All organisms are uniquely different, based on hereditary factors each has from birth.
- Although many organisms are produced, few manage to develop to maturity.
- Only organisms that constantly adapt to the existing environment manage to grow to maturity and reproduce. For instance, the Amoeba, which may have survived only in water, changed by mutation and cast a protective shell (cyst) around its body, which enabled it to survive when the climate changed and became dry.
- Even after mutation, only the fittest organisms could survive as the weak became extinct due to limited resources. This theory came to be popularly known as Survival for the Fittest.
As species emerging from mutation and natural selection increase in number, search for basic needs intensifies. Some few species take on a significantly different form through adaptation to the new environment as they get isolated from the rest.
Darwin’s theory of evolution is supported by almost all scientists, particularly palaeontologists. It holds that human beings belong to the Animal Kingdom and that Man is a primate as are apes like gorillas, chimpanzees and monkeys, although apes belong to the family Pongidae while human beings are in the Hominidae family.
Analyse the evolution and adaptation of Man.
- The earliest living things appeared probably about 200 million years ago as microscopic creatures in the expansive waters that covered the earth.
- Gradually, the creatures evolved into bigger organisms such as fish and amphibians, equipped with special features to survive, which differentiated them from those we have today.
- Climatic changes About 150 million years ago led to the drying up of swamps and other water masses. Most of the early creatures perished as some others evolved into small reptiles such as dinosaurs.
- Mammals may have evolved from such small reptiles.
- Man may have evolved from such animals. He was then transformed over millions of years from a primitive form to what he is today.
- The first stage of man‟s evolution was the appearance of hominids that were more manlike than apelike. These became the ancestors of the human family.
State two major reasons why the earliest mammals lived on trees.
- There was more supply of food on trees, such as insects, leaves and birds‟ eggs.
- They were more secure from their enemies while up on trees.
Explain why Africa is the most probable cradle of mankind.
- African Savannas were ideal for primates.
- The moist, warm and varied climate supported animal and plant life.
- Archaeological sites were discovered in the Great Lakes region of eastern Africa and along the Great Rift Valley. This confirms that hominids were living in this region by the time the rift valley was being formed.
- The earliest apes and various animals may have first lived around what is now Lake Victoria and the rift valley, then some went northwards into Europe and Asia. This was because, at that time, areas along the Equator (especially central and west Africa) were covered in thick forest. Around the Great lakes of East Africa was the Savannah (grassland with scattered trees and bushes). It was in this environment that man had his first home. Ø Due to earth quakes and volcanic eruptions during the formation of the great rift valley, allot of dust was brought up, which covered places where hominids had left their weapons, tools, their own bones, and those of other animals. These became archaeological sites in east Africa.
Name the archaeological sites in Kenya.
- Rusinga Island,
- Fort Ternan near Kericho,
- Kariandusi near Elmentaita,
- Gambles Cave,
- Koobi-For a near Lake Turkana,
- Hyrax Hill,
- Njoro River Cave.
Name the archaeological sites in Tanzania.
- Olduvai Gorge,
- Apis Rock,
Name the archaeological sites in Uganda.
Identify/name archaeological sites outside East Africa.
- Fayum depression in Egypt.
- Taung in Botswana.
- Omo River valley in Ethiopia.
- The Afar depression in Ethiopia.
- Hadar in Ethiopia.
- Tenerife in Algeria.
- Bodo in Ethiopia.
- Matupi cave in Shaba province of Congo DRC.
- Kalambo falls in Zambia.
- Orangia in southern Africa.
- Dar Es Sultan cave in southern Africa.
- Apollo II caves in Orange state in South Africa.
Explain how climatic and environmental changes influenced Man’s evolution.
Physical features that were no longer needed in the Savannah, such as the tail, were done away with.
- Man became more upright in posture since he used his forelimbs in making tools, in hunting and in protecting himself from other predators. The upright posture cooled the body by exposing less body surface to the sun.
- As the forests disappeared, competition for food intensified. Human beings gradually changed their eating habits, indicating a break-off point between apes and hominids.
- Hominids‟ skull-sizes became larger, indicating bigger brains.
- The jaws and teeth of hominids became smaller but powerful, indicating their use in tearing, cutting of tough fibres and roots, or even the need to defend themselves using their teeth as a weapon.
- Their fore-arms and hands became shorter and more appropriate for an upright posture while the thumb became stronger and more separate from the other four fingers, indicating the need for a firmer grip on other things such as pebbles and tree branches.
- Their legs and front formation changed in order to support the weight of the rest of the body and maintain a balance while either motionless or mobile. The feet and toes became shorter as they were no longer required to hold onto tree branches.
STAGES OF MAN’S EVOLUTION
- Identify the alternative names by which the following stages of man’s evolution are known:
- Dryopithecus Africanus.
- Name the types of Australopithecus.
- Identify the characteristics of:
- Dryopithecus Africanus,
- Homosapiens Sapiens.
- In what ways was Homoerectus different from hominids that came before him?
- Name the places where the remains of Homoerectus were found.
- Identify three subspecies of Homosapiens.
- In what ways are Homosapiens Sapiens different from Homosapiens?
- Describe three major races into which mankind is divided.
- Analyse the stages through which early man evolved.
The name Aegyptopithecus means Egyptian Ape. Aegyptopithecus‟ 33 million year-old 4kg small skull-remains were found in the Fayum depression. He lived at a time when Egypt was a forested area.
Characteristics of Aegyptopithecus
- He was a monkey like creature: the earliest probable ancestor of both Man and Ape. Ø He had stereoscopic vision and hands with which he would skilfully jump from one tree to another.
- His teeth were those of a herbivore.
2. DRYOPITHECUS AFRICANUS (Proconsul).
The twenty million year-old skull of this hominid was found on Rusinga island within the Kenya part of the Lake Victoria region in 1948 by Mary and Louis Leakey. He was the earliest evidence that Africa was Man‟s first home, for he occupied the entire east African forest, though he was also found in Europe and South-East Asia. The term Dryopithecus means Woodland Ape.
Characteristics of Dryopithecus Africanus He was chimpanzee like.
He had a smooth forehead.
- He had long teeth like those of other animals.
- He mainly ate fruits.
3. RAMAPITHECUS (Kenyapithecus).
The 15-12 million year-old remains of Ramapithecus were found by Mary and Louis
Leakey at Fort Ternan near kericho and also at Samburu hills and in the Lakes Turkana and Baringo basins. Ramapithecus and other manlike creatures were also discovered in Europe, India and China.
Characteristics of Ramapithecus
- He was manlike.
- He had small canines.
- He was quadrapedal (he moved on his four limbs), though he occasionally walked on two legs.
4. AUSTRALOPITHECUS (Zinjanthropus).
Remains of Australopithecus were found at Taung in Botswana in 1924 by Raymond Dart, at Olduvai Gorge in Tanzania by Mary Leakey in 1959 and throughout eastern Africa e.g. regions around Lake Natron in Tanzania, Lake Turkana in Kenya and Omo River valley in Ethiopia.
Characteristics of Australopithecus
- He was the earliest most manlike hominid.
- He had a pelvis and leg that were similar to modern man‟s. Ø He was bipedal (walked on two limbs).
- Could defend themselves.
- Could attack their enemies.
- Could see or sense impending danger from a distance.
- Could grasp objects with ease.
- May have been hairy, short and strong.
- Had a large face and low forehead.
- Had stereoscopic vision.
- Had much larger teeth, skull and jaws.
- His brain was smaller than modern man‟s, but larger than that of the most intelligent ape: the Gorilla.
Classifications/types of Australopithecus
Four different types of Australopithecus have been identified. These are: Ø Australopithecus Anamensis, whose four-million year old remains, were found at Kenapoi and Alliabay in the Lake Turkana region.
- Australopithecus Afarensis, which was bipedal and small in stature. His four to three million year old remains were found at Laetoli in Tanzania and Tugen Hills in Baringo district: Kenya. The name Afarensis is derived from the Afar depression in Ethiopia.
- Australopithecus Africanus (Gracilis), who lived between three to two and a half million years ago and was small, light, slender and a metre and a half tall, with a small brain, but larger teeth, jaws and
- Australopithecus Robustus, which was strongly built, with massive jaws and powerful teeth, weighed 68kg and was the biggest and most recent type of Australopithecus. He lived between two and one and a half million years ago in South Africa and was apparently vegetarian. He ate fruits, nuts and raw tubers. The Eastern African Australopithecus Robustus was named Australopithecus Boisei.
5. HOMOHABILIS (Practical man).
This was the first species of the genus Homo. His two and a half to one and a half millionyear old remains were found at Olduvai Gorge by Jonathan Leakey in 1964, Hadar and Omo River valley in Ethiopia and Koobi-For a in the lake Turkana area in 1972.
Characteristics of Homohabilis
- He was five feet tall.
- He had a skull similar to modern man‟s in shape. Ø He was omnivorous.
- He could grasp objects.
- He made and used tools.
6. HOMOERECTUS (upright man).
Homoerectus lived between two million to two hundred thousand years ago.
- He was five and a half feet tall.
- He was bipedal (walked on two legs).
- He made and used tools, such as hand-axes, crude spears and arrowheads from stone, bone and wood.
In what ways was Homoerectus different from earlier hominids?
Homoerectus was different from hominids that came before him in the following ways: Ø He had a bigger brain.
- He had a long skull.
- He had long protruding jaws.
- He could communicate by speech.
- He made and used fire.
- He had some form of home.
Name the places where remains of Homoerectus were found.
The remains of Homoerectus were found:
- At Hadar and Omo river valley in Ethiopia,
- At Nariokotone River on the north-western shore of Lake Turkana,
- At Olorgesailie near Lake Magadi.
- At Isimila near Iringa in Tanzania,
- In Tenerife in Algeria,
- In morocco.
- In South Africa.
Homoerectus also lived in France, Spain, India, Indonesia, Hungary and Brazil. In Asia, he is referred to as Java man or Peking Man.
7. HOMOSAPIEN (Thinking/Intelligent man).
Homosapien appeared between two hundred thousand and a hundred and fifty thousand years ago.
Characteristics of Homosapien Ø He was under six feet tall
- He had small teeth.
- He had a steep and well-rounded forehead.
- He had long straight legs.
- He made a variety of more refined tools i.e. microliths.
- He was a fisherman and hunter-gatherer.
- He domesticated plants and animals.
Remains of Homosapien were found at:
- Eliye springs near Lake Turkana,
- Kanjera and Kanam in Kenya, Ø Bodo and Omo river valley in Ethiopia, Ø Ngaloba in Tanzania.
Three subspecies of Homosapien have been identified. These are:
- The Rhodesian Man, discovered in northern Rhodesia (present-day Zambia). he was still more apelike, with ridges over his eyes and a backward sloping forehead. But he had straight legs and walked with long strides, with a skull and brain like modern man‟s. He made and used scrapping and cutting tools from bone and stone.
- Neanderthal Man, discovered in Neander valley in Germany in 1856 and in Asia, north Africa, France, Belgium, Gibraltar, Italy, former Yugoslavia and other parts of Europe. He was a hunter-gatherer. Though heavily built with a thick skull, broad shoulders and bushy eye-brows like an ape, he made and used skilfully chipped stone tools and practised ceremonial burial just like modern man.
- Cro-Magnon Man, discovered in Europe. This one cooked using fire and was a huntergatherer, painter and cave dweller. He resembled modern man, except that he was taller, stronger and with bushy eyebrows.
8. HOMOSAPIENS SAPIENS.
These may have appeared around fifty thousand years ago and are associated with new inventions in military technology, medicine, agriculture and industries. Homosapiens Sapiens are different from Homosapiens in the following ways:
- They have a more advanced faculty for curiosity and intelligence,
- They plan ahead,
- They make accurate forecasts,
- They study stars and galaxies,
- They think and invent.
More recent discoveries of early man include:
- The Millennium man, discovered in 2000 in Baringo: Kenya, which dates back to six million years ago.
- The 6-7 million year old Trumai, found in Chad in 2002AD, which indicates that man may have started evolving separately from apes much earlier than currently thought. Using their superior technology, Homosapiens were able to disperse and adapt to areas where other hominids would not have survived, leading to emergence of various races of people with distinct characteristics in skin colour, hair and facial appearance, probably due to isolation of various human populations and their adaptation to different environments.
Races of mankind
There are three main races of mankind. These are:
- The Negroid, which largely comprises Africans, who mainly occupy Africa.
- The Caucasoid, (Caucasians), which is made up of Whites and Indians. These are mainly found in Europe, Asia and North America.
- The Mongoloids, who include Chinese, Japanese, Koreans and the natives of the Americas.
EARLY MAN’S WAY OF LIFE
Why is the period of early man referred to as the Stone Age?
It was called so because man‟s material culture mainly comprised stone. Man‟s tools, weapons and other equipment were mainly made from stone.
List the three stages into which the Stone Age period has been divided.
- The Old Stone Age, also known as the Lower Palaeolithic, which lasted between 450,000 to 50,000 years ago and was mainly characterised by making a few simple tools. Ø The Middle Stone Age (Middle Palaeolithic), also called the Mesolithic, which lasted between 2, 00,000-10,000 years ago and is mainly associated with Homoerectus and Homosapiens.
- The New Stone Age (Upper Palaeolithic), also known as the Late Stone Age, which lasted between 15,000-1500 years ago and is associated with Homosapiens and Homosapiens Sapiens.
THE OLD STONE AGE
Describe two phases into which the Old Stone Age was divided.
- The First Phase, which is associated with Olduwan (pebble) tools.
- The Second Phase, which was characterised by making and use of Acheullian tools.
Name/describe the technique by which early man made weapons and tools during the Old Stone Age.
- It was “La Vallois” Technique (shaping flint by blows), characterised by use of easily available material such as stone in making weapons and tools.
Name/describe the earliest well finished manmade tool.
It was the Fist-Hatchet, which was a Flint-stone that was broad at one end but narrow and sharp at the other and basically served as a cutting tool, though it was multipurpose.
Identify/describe two types of tools made/used by early man during the Old Stone Age.
- Olduwan (pebble) tools, made from fairly large round stones. They were made and used only in Africa by Australopithecus and Homohabilis.
- Acheullian tools, which were first discovered at Saint Acheul valley in northern France, which explains the background of their name. They appeared in east Africa about one and a half million years ago.
Outline three examples of Olduwan tools.
Identify the places where Olduwan tools were found.
- Olduvai Gorge in Tanzania,
- Koobi-Fora near Lake Turkana in Kenya,
- Omo river valley in Ethiopia,
- Kafu valley in Uganda,
- Shaba province in the Democratic republic of Congo,
Olduwan tools were widely spread in south, central and North Africa.
In what places were Acheullian tools found?
Acheullian tools appeared in east Africa about one and a half million years ago and have been found in
- South Africa,
- North Africa,
- The Mediterranean basin,
- The Middle East,
In Kenya, Acheullian tools were found at:
- Isenya, Ø Lewa downs.
Explain how Acheullian tools were made.
Acheullian tools, which are associated with Homoerectus, were made by flaking the corestone on both sides to produce a sharp-pointed end and longer cutting edges.
Identify any two Acheullian tools.
State the uses of Acheullian tools.
Describe Man’s life during the Old Stone Age with regard to: (a) Climate and Clothes, (b) Shelter and food.
CLIMATE AND CLOTHES
In Old Stone Age, man walked naked because:
- He had not yet learned how to make clothes.
- The open grassland in the Savannah (in which early man lived) had climate that was warm enough to make lack of clothes bearable.
- He had a hairy body.
- stone Age must have been colder than it is today, which explains why man‟s body was hairy.
SHELTER AND FOOD
- Man slept on trees, in tree-trunks, stone-caves and rock-shelters for protection from predators. He had not yet learnt how to build houses.
- Man fed on plants, birds‟ eggs and insects, which he ate raw since fire-making had not yet been invented.
- He had a kind of home-base, where he often brought some of his food.
Describe man’s hunting methods during the Old Stone Age period. Old Stone-age man hunted by:
- Chasing and throwing stone bolars to entangle and catch the escaping prey.
- Digging large pits in the path of big animals to trap them as they went to drink water. Ø Chasing or herding animals over steep cliffs or into muddy or swampy lakes for easy catching. Man then skinned his prey and ate the meat raw.
- Hunting was a group activity. It was a kind of life that required strong people.
- As men hunted, women gathered fruits and berries.
Name the hominids that the Old Stone Age is associated with.
THE MIDDLE STONE AGE
Name the hominids that the Middle Stone Age is associated with.
Identify three types of tools made and used during the Middle Stone Age.
- Sangoan tools, some of which were found at Sango bay on the western side of Lake Victoria in Tanzania, which explains why they bear the name Sangoan tools.
- Specialized stone-tools, made through the Mousterian style.
- The Tang, which may have been the first tool with a handle and was invented and used in North Africa about 40,000 years ago.
Identify the techniques used in tool making during the Middle Stone Age.
- “La Vallois” technique, used in making Sangoan tools.
- The Mousterian style, which was used in making specialized stone-tools.
Identify the discoveries or inventions made by Homoerectus during the Middle Stone Age.
- Invention and use of fire.
- Invention and use of better weapons and hunting methods.
- Cooking of food, which rendered previously poisonous kinds edible.
- Man wore animal skins, shells and necklaces as clothing and ornaments instead of walking naked.
- Development of language for communication, which strengthened man‟s culture and social bonds.
- Development of Rock art. Man painted pictures of the animals he hunted on cave-walls, as is illustrated at Kondoa and Singida areas in north-central Tanzania and Apollo ii) caves in Orange state in South Africa. Identify any three Sangoan tools.
- Chisel peaks,
- Plane peaks,
- Choppers, Ø
State the importance of fire to early man.
(in what ways did the invention and use of fire change man‟s way of life?)
- It provided warmth, particularly during cold spells.
- It provided lighting, mainly at night.
- Man could now cook his food, which rendered previously poisonous varieties edible.
- iv)) Hunting became easier and shorter, as bush-fires pushed animals into confined areas.
- Wild animals were frightened and kept away.
- It was used in hardening tips of wooden tools, which greatly improved tool making.
- It was used in signalling and communication.
- It was used in preserving food, e.g. in drying fish and meat.
- Man was able to move from the warm Savannah to other areas. Ø Pottery was baked and hardened.
Describe Man’s life during the Middle Stone Age with regard to:
1. Food and Clothes,
FOOD AND CLOTHES
- Better weapons and hunting methods were used. Large animals like elephants, deer, rhinos, pigs, buffaloes, hippopotamus and the grazing antelopes were caught. Ø Food could now be cooked.
- Fruits, birds‟ eggs, insects and fish were eaten in addition to meat.
- Animal skins, shells and necklaces were worn as clothing and ornaments. Ø People painted themselves with red ochre and oil.
- Man started to identify and have particular places where his family could retire and rest after the day‟s activities.
- For security, man later lived in caves, which had their entrances covered with animalskins to keep away wind and rain as fire burnt at such entrances at night to keep off wild animals.
Identify examples of places where Middle Stone Age man and his family could retire and rest after the day’s activities.
- An open site with at least six semi-circular stone-settings, which was found at Orangia in southern Africa.
- The rock-shelters that were scooped out to form hollows, found at Olorgesailie near Nakuru in Kenya.
Identify examples of caves that were used as shelters by Man during the Middle Stone Age.
- Matupi Cave in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ø Gambles cave near Lake Nakuru in Kenya, Ø Dar Es Sultan cave in southern Africa.
Explain the advances made by early man during the Middle Stone Age with regard to:
1. Language and Rock art.
2. Social organization.
LANGUAGE AND ROCK-ART
- Man developed language for communication, which strengthened his culture and social bonds.
- Man painted pictures of the animals he hunted on cave-walls, as is illustrated at Kondoa and Singida areas in north-central Tanzania and Apollo ii) caves in Orange state in South Africa.
- Families lived in small groups for security reasons.
- There was efficient group organization, especially during hunting expeditions.
- With the invention of language, early man‟s culture and social bonds were strengthened.
In what two ways was Rock art important to early man during the Middle Stone Age?
- Cave-paintings showed keen observation of animal life.
- It implied development of some belief in magic. Man believed that his drawings could control his chances over his prey and that by painting such animal pictures, the hunt would be successful. Indeed, some pictures contained arrows piercing the animals he hoped to get for his food.
NEW STONE AGE
Name two hominids with who the New Stone Age was associated.
- Homosapiens Sapiens.
Describe the main tool whose use marked the New Stone Age.
The New Stone age was marked by use of microliths i.e. small pieces of sharp stone fitted and glued into wood or bone handles, e.g. the Crescent or lunette. Several microliths were
fixed together in wooden or bone shafts to make “composite” tools.
Identify other tools that were used during the New Stone Age apart from Microliths.
- Bone needles,
Describe the culture of early Man during the new Stone Age with regard to:
1. Food and agriculture,
2. Language and religion.
FOOD AND AGRICULTURE
- with better tools and weapons, man’s fishing techniques improved, although he continued hunting and gathering fruits and roots for food.
- Domestication of plants and animals began, which improved man‟s life.
- Adequate and balanced diet, due to which man‟s population increased tremendously.
LANGUAGE AND RELIGION
- Man began to depend more on natural forces such as rain for fertility and productivity of land, aware that drought could easily cause their ruin. Ø Man began to ponder over issues such as life after death.
- Man performed rites and ceremonies believing that they could influence rain, drought, death and other natural forces.
Identify Archaeological sites in Kenya where evidence of New Stone age religious practices was found.
- At Hyrax hill,
- Njoro river cave near Nakuru.
Apart from human fossil remains, identify other New Stone Age items that were discovered at the places you’ve mentioned.
Describe the social organization/advances of early man during the New Stone age.
- Man settled in villages, each of which comprised about 1000 members.
- Practices such as body decoration developed. Red ochre was used as body make-up while beads made of seeds, bones and ostrich egg-shells were worn.
- Simple arts and crafts like basketry and smelting of bronze and iron developed. Pots were made by shaping clay and baking it hard using fire. Man was able to spin and weave clothing from flax and other natural fibres.
- Man made shelters using tree branches and grass, decorating walls and roofs with animal paintings. Other than caves and rock- shelters, man built huts.
- Language and religion developed as man settled.
List the economic advances made by early man during the New Stone age.
- Man made and used better tools and weapons,
- Man‟s fishing techniques improved, although he continued hunting and gathering fruits and roots for food.
- Domestication of plants and animals began, which improved man‟s life.
- Adequate and balanced diet, due to which man‟s population increased tremendously.
Explain early man’s political advances during the New Stone Age.
- As a farmer, man started leading a settled life. He built improved semi permanent shelters.
- Because of his social way of life, rules and laws were set up, which later formed the basis of the civil society.
- Because not everyone took up farming, some people specialised in leadership, religion and the making of crafts.