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Ref ID: 37250
Ref Type: Journal Article
Authors: Oppenheimer, Stephen
Title: The great arc of dispersal of modern humans: Africa to Australia
Date: 2009
Source: Quaternary International
DOI: 10.1016/j.quaint.2008.05.015
Abstract: During the Late Pleistocene, anatomically modern humans (AMH) dispersed out of Africa across the continents. Their routes obeyed the limitations placed on any large terrestrial mammal dependent on daily drinking water, following certain climate-permissive corridors. AMH first spread north, with game, across the Sahara to the Levant during the Eemian interglacial (c.125 ka), but failed to continue to Europe, then occupied by Neanderthals. The savannah ecosystem in North Africa and the Middle East then dried up, and AMH vanished from the Levantine fossil record, being replaced there by Neanderthals. Later, AMH successfully left Africa as a single group by the southern route to India. The added ability to make short but deliberate open water crossings allowed them first to cross the mouth of the Red Sea from Eritrea, and subsequently Wallace's Line to reach the isolated Sahul continent at least by 48,000 years ago and possibly by 60–50,000 years ago. They only finally arrived in Europe from South Asia around 45–50,000 years ago, probably linked to climatic amelioration during OIS-3.
Volume: 202
Number: 1-2
Page Start: 2
Page End: 13