Nature 438, 1099-1104 (22 December 2005) | doi:10.1038/nature04259

An Asian perspective on early human dispersal from Africa

Robin Dennell1 & Wil Roebroeks2


The past decade has seen the Pliocene and Pleistocene fossil hominin record enriched by the addition of at least ten new taxa, including the Early Pleistocene, small-brained hominins from Dmanisi, Georgia, and the diminutive Late Pleistocene Homo floresiensis from Flores, Indonesia. At the same time, Asia's earliest hominin presence has been extended up to 1.8 Myr ago, hundreds of thousands of years earlier than previously envisaged. Nevertheless, the preferred explanation for the first appearance of hominins outside Africa has remained virtually unchanged. We show here that it is time to develop alternatives to one of palaeoanthropology's most basic paradigms: 'Out of Africa 1'.

  1. Department of Archaeology, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S1 4ET, UK
  2. Department of Archaeology, Leiden University, PO Box 9515, 2300RA Leiden, The Netherlands

Correspondence to: Wil Roebroeks2 Correspondence should be addressed to R.D. (Email:


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