Petralona Cave - Greece

The human skull that challenges the Out of Africa theory

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This is the account of the discovery of a skull that has the potential to change what we know about human evolution, and a suppression and cover-up which followed.   

In 1959, in an area called Chalkidiki in Petralona, Northern Greece, a shepherd came across a small opening to a cave, which became visible when a thick covering of snow finally melted.  He gathered a group of villagers to help him clear the entrance so they could go inside and explore.  They found a cave rich in stalactites and stalagmites. But they also found something surprising – a human skull embedded in the wall (later research also uncovered a huge number of fossils including pre-human species, animal hair, fossilized wood, and stone and bone tools).   

Petralona SkullThe skull was given to the University of Thessaloniki in Greece by the President of the Petralona Community. The agreement was that once the research was done, a museum would be opened featuring the findings from the Petralona cave, and the skull would be returned to be displayed in the museum – something that never happened.

Dr Aris Poulianos, member of the UNESCO's IUAES (International Union of Anthropological and Ethnological Sciences), later founder of the Anthropological Association of Greece , and an expert anthropologist who was working at the University of Moscow at the time, was invited by the Prime Minister of Greece to return to Greece to take a position of a University Chair in Athens.  This was due to the publication of his book, ‘The Origins of the Greeks’, which provides excellent research showing that Greek people didn’t originate from the Slavic nations but were indigenous to Greece.  Upon his return to Greece, Dr Poulianos was made aware of the discovery of the skull at Petralona, and immediately started studying the Petralona cave and skull.

The ‘Petralona man’, or Archanthropus of Petralona, as it has since been called, was found to be 700,000 years old, making it the oldest human europeoid (presenting European traits) of that age ever discovered in Europe. Dr Poulianos’ research showed that the Petralona man evolved separately in Europe and was not an ancestor of a species that came out of Africa. 

In 1964, independent German researchers, Breitinger and Sickenberg, tried to dismiss Dr Poulianos’ findings, arguing that the skull was only 50,000 years old and was indeed an ancestor that came from Africa.  However, research published in the US in 1971 in the prestigious Archaeology magazine, backed up the findings that the skull was indeed 700,000 years old.  This was based on an analysis of the cave’s stratigraphy and the sediment in which the skull was embedded.  Further research in the cave discovered isolated teeth and two pre-human skeletons dating back 800,000 years, as well as other fossils of various species.

Today, most academics who have analyzed the Petralona remains say that the cranium of the Archanthropus of Petralona belongs to an archaic hominid distinguished from Homo erectus, and from both the classic Neanderthals and anatomically modern humans, but showing characterists of all those species and presenting strong European traits.  A skull dating back 700,000 which is either Homo sapien or part Homo sapien is in direct conflict with the Out of Africa theory of human evolution.  

Petralona Man

Further excavations continued in the cave of Petralona with the participation of international researchers (46 specialists from 12 separate countries), which provided further proof of Dr Poulianos’ claims, including remarkable findings like fossilized pieces of wood, an oak leaf, animal hair and coprolites, which enabled accurate dating, as well as the almost continuous presence of stone and bone tools of the Archanthropus evolutionary stage, from the lower (750,000 years) to the upper (550,000 years) layers of sediment within the cave.

The research, after an interruption due to the dictatorship in Greece, continued up to 1983. It was then ordered by the government that all excavations at the site were forbidden to anyone, including the original archaeological team, and for 15 years nobody had access to the site or to the findings – no reason was provided by the government.  Was this denial of access to prevent the extraction of whatever new scientific conclusions remained hidden within the incredible fossils embedded within the layers of the caves’ walls? 

After the Anthropological Society of Greece took the case to the courts, 15 years later they were again allowed access to the cave.  Since then the Ministry of Culture is trying in any way to overcome the Courts decision and further trials proceed.

Comments

This article has certainly brought 'out of the woodwork' all those who do NOT want to be thought of as descended from Africans - oh my god! - wonder why that is ! (I cannot imagine!) - there is another theory of possible human origin which is VERY interesting and should be examined also -
try : www.macroevolution.net - for another take on the story - a hybrids theory of 'evolution' - since all scientific theories are just that - theories - we do not need to get upset about any idea - just ponder and educate yourself on the possibilities ! Scientists themselves should also be doing that,

You are tying your identity to that of the Moors, Asians,Europeans, and Indians while your actual ancestors were that of the bantu, congolese, sub saharan, or a nubian.

Get over yourself...melanin has it's qualities but you're using spiritual metaphors...and the type of metaphors you are using are ones that debunk itself. Your metaphors fall flat when you try to use the surplus of melanin you've been supplied into the "we have more melanin than you people" theory of superiority.

If that were the case of melanin being a super-power, there would have been nothing bad that happened to your people in history, Africa would be a rich empire, there would be no starving children on television ads and you would be able to levitate.

Where is your spiritual metaphor for your failure throughout history? and how could I say this? If by default melanin in abundance met power for the individuals harnessing it, then there wouldn't be a starving mouth in Africa to this very day. Melanin : Debunked.

This is "WACIST" ! How dare you challenging the theory that men didn't originate in Africa !
We know that African are the originators of Humanity, they are the Light upon the World. just look at the civilization that they build ! The Pyramids, The Great Wall of China ect..ect..

IS that in fact a human skull or that of a primate? It appears to be a primate skull. On what basis is this called a 'human' skull?

Your reference is to the low set cheek bones similar to that of a primate... and considering the lower half of the skull isn't presented but it's not a primate or ape skull. Ape skulls have more of a slope below the nose leading to the upper lip. Look at the picture of the skull with it's low set cheek bones and the photo of Dr. Poulianos. It Is Human.

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