85  The age of humanity

Menu  back

Most experts believe that humans have existed for about two millions years. This would mean, however, that the rate of population growth must have been practically zero up until the modern era. Comparisons with similar cultures present today show that this scenario is unrealistic. In addition, an analysis of the remains of Stone Age people tells us that, even though they had enough to eat, their populations never numbered in the millions. The empirical demographic and volumetric data and the estimates of what they have left behind allow at most some thousand years of prehistory. Six aspects which contradict the hypothetical two-million-year history of humankind:

1) The lack of population growth

2) Cultural and technical stagnation

3) The small numbers of stone tools found

4) The low levels of settlement stability and relatively small numbers of settlement sites

5) The brevity of cave habitation periods

6) The lack of graves

1) The lack of population growth:

Assuming poor to catastrophic living conditions for early humans, and assuming a very low level of annual population growth of 0.1%, there should have been eight million Stone Age humans after only 15,000 years. Even under the worst possible conditions, the human population of the Earth would have to become about as large as it is today after 23,000 years at most. The marks which they have left behind indicate that the living conditions (nutritional situation and health) were in most cases quite good, so that one would have to assume a more rapid growth of population (1).

2) Cultural and technical stagnation:

Cultural and technical development stagnated almost completely throughout the entire Stone Age. The reason given for this is that early humans were supposedly mentally underdeveloped. The archaeological remains, however, tell a different story. They tell us that both the Neanderthals and Homo erectus had skills and behavioural features that match those of modern humans (2) (3). The archaeologist Robin Dennell describes in his writing the remarkable depth of planning, refined sense of design and patient woodcutting that went into making weapons (4). Up to date, these qualities had been ascribed to modern humans only.

3) The small numbers of stone tools found:

Conventional science estimates the age of the remains of the earliest true humans at about two million years. It is assumed that these people lived as hunters in a Stone Age culture until 10,000 years ago. However, remains from these people have not been found in significant numbers at all. This is particularly remarkable with reference to the stone tools, since they are preserved relatively well over time. Counting the tools found from earlier times and comparing these counts with the numbers of tools made by hunting cultures of today reveals that the number of stone tools found is much too small.

Even assuming that, for example, a population of only 1,000 persons had lived in Germany over a period of 800,000 years, we should be able to find several billion stone tools. Realistically, however, it must be assumed that the population of Europe was several millions, at least in some phases. Compared to the billions of stone tools they would have to have left behind, the actual stone tool findings are meagre indeed (5).

4) The low levels of settlement stability and relatively small number of settlement sites:

The number of settlement sites of Stone Age humans is also much lower than it should be. For example, consider the situation in Bohemia during the Magdalenian period, purportedly from 11,500 to 15,000 years ago. An estimated population of 350 persons is said to have lived in the area, distributed among fourteen groups. They moved camp several times a year. In a period of 3,500 years, these fourteen groups alone must have left behind between 87,500 and 245,000 campsites. Only fifteen have been found to date. Even allowing that only a very small proportion of the settlement sites may have lasted down to the present, this number is simply much too small for the length of time in question. It is, by the way, also highly unrealistic to assume that a population of 350 persons could survive for more than 3,500 years without increasing (6).

5) The brevity of cave habitation periods:

Contrary to what one might think, the cave habitation periods were brief in each instance. This is also evident from the few remains found in the caves of south western Germany. For instance, only three sites were found in the Eselsburg Valley from a period claimed to be 25,000 years long, and these sites had only been inhabited for short periods. If humanity had lived at least occasionally in caves for over one million years with only a minimum increase in population during that time, it would have to be assumed that a very large number of caves would have been inhabited for periods extending to thousands of years (7).

6) The lack of graves:

Even assuming a minimum population density of only three inhabitants per km2, this would result in a grave density of 0.15 graves per m2 over a period of 1.5 millions years (that is one grave every 2.6 m). Of course an individual grave was not dug for each person. Nonetheless, if the history of mankind really had lasted two million years the continents should be literally covered with graves.

These 86  |  Menu


(1) Michael Brandt, Wie alt ist die Menschheit?, Hänssler-Verlag, 2006, pages 67–86.
(2) Hartmut Thieme in einem Interview in Spektrum der Wissenschaften, Oktober 2004, pages 48–50, Jagdwaffen and -strategien des Homo erectus.
(3) Junker and Scherer, Evolution, ein kritisches Lehrbuch, 2006, pages 283–286.
(4) Robin Dennell, The world’s oldest spears, Nature 385, 27. Februar 1997, pages 767–768.
(5) Michael Brandt, Wie alt ist die Menschheit?, Hänssler-Verlag, 2006, pages 95–123.
(6) Robin Dennell, pages 125–129.
(7) Robin Dennell, pages 137–140.

Comment this Site!