Mysterious skull found in Australia Could Rewrite History

Mysterious skull found in Australia Could Rewrite History

Australia may need to revise its history books after the mysterious skull of a white man found in New South Wales was found to date back to the 1600s, long before the arrival of Captain James Cook in 1770, who is believed to have been the first European to reach the East Coast of the continent.  

Questions have already been raised about who first discovered Australia after a recent report about East African coins found on an Australian beach dating back to the 900s. Now the latest discovery adds to the controversy by suggesting that white man arrived in Australia earlier than currently believed.

The skull was initially found near Taree, NSW in late 2011 and now carbon dating of the skull and tooth enamel has revealed that it belong to a white man born around 1650.

"At first we weren't really thinking about people coming to Australia until we started to look at the dates and say, 'Oh, that's becoming intriguing'" said Dr Stewart Fallon, a researcher at the Australian National University in Canberra.

However, Melbourne-based archaeologist Adam Ford said we should not jump to conclusions too quickly. "Before we rewrite the history of European settlement we have to consider a number of issues, particularly the circumstances of the discovery."  The skull was found in relatively good condition which could suggest that it came from a private collection, or the skull may have been deliberately placed there as a hoax, as happened in the early 1900s with the UK's 'Piltdown Man' – the most famous archaeological hoax in history.

Nevertheless, if proven to be authentic, the skull is an incredible find that could open up a whole new understanding of Australian history.

By April Holloway

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