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As Machiavelli once said "Whoever wishes to foresee the future must consult the past; for human events ever resemble those of preceding times. This arises from the fact that they are produced by men who ever have been, and ever shall be, animated by the same passions, and thus they necessarily have the same results." It is these passions that we search for while delving into our history, a way of connecting to the great men and women who came before us. We reach back and learn from their mistakes and victories and gain a sense of belonging to the great cycle of life. For History Lovers is a place to explore our past and debate on the significance of major and minor historical events.

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Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Olduvai Gorge

Saturday, October 23, 2010
An Ancient lake basin in northern Tanzania, the Olduvai Gorge has yielded the remains of more than 60 hominids as well as the two earliest stone tool traditions ever found (Oldowan and Acheulian). The gorge was discovered when German entomologist Wilhelm Kattwinkel fell into it while chasing a butterfly in 1911 . This inspired Hans Reck to lead an expedition there in 1913 but his work was ended by World War I. Excavations of Olduvai began in 1931 by Lois Leakey and his wife Mary. Three separate species of hominids have been found at Olduvai over the years, including Australopithecus boisei, Homo habilis and Homo erectus. Animal remains have also been found at the site including large antelopes, elephants, hares, guinea fowl, giraffes and hipparions (extinct three-toed horses). The Olduvai Gorge contains the longest sequences of cultural remains ever found and the discoveries there have strengthened the argument that the origins of humanity are in Africa. These finds also give us an insight into how these hominids lived, like when in 1975, Mary Leakey found hominid footprints which proved that they walked on two feet, which proved to be one of the greatest paleoanthropological discoveries of the past century.

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