Ancient skull remains which were uncovered in the Manot Cave, which is located in the western Galilee region of Israel could have serious implications on the history of humans, and how the ancient move from Africa to Europe happened. Israel Hershkovitz of Tel Aviv University, who led the study called the skull “an important piece of the puzzle of the big story of human evolution.” The location of the skull, combined with the sediment that was on, and around the skull allowed researchers to verify that it was between 50-60 thousand years old.

Bruce Latimer, who was involved in the study, pointed out that “It is the first direct fossil evidence that modern humans and Neanderthals inhabited the same area at the same time.” The find is really special in that it finally enforces some of the speculation and assumptions that scientists and researchers have made throughout the last several decades about what happened to humans, and how we became what we are today.

Researchers pointed out that while there were other children’s remains found in the cave with the skull – that it was likely from an adult. However, they also noted that the brain was likely around 1,100 milliliters – that is smaller than the modern brain – that measures around 1,400 milliliters. It’s unclear whether the remains or the skull are from a male or female – since particular bones that are necessary to identify gender are missing, but researchers are continuing their analysis of the remains to determine what the gender might be.

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This though is a positive sign for scientists and researchers who believe more remains are likely hidden in the cave as well. “This leads us to believe that there are likely more fossils in the cave where other bones associated with the skull might be found,” according to Mark Hans, of Cleveland’s Case Western Reserve University’s Department of Orthodontics. Right now there is still a lot that is unknown about the development and the migration of humans – and this is some very valuable information regarding the history of humans, and where humans went in their early days going back as many as 200,000 and 400,000 years ago.