Neanderthals and the modern human colonization of Europe

Nature. 2004 Nov 25;432(7016):461-5. doi: 10.1038/nature03103.


The fate of the Neanderthal populations of Europe and western Asia has gripped the popular and scientific imaginations for the past century. Following at least 200,000 years of successful adaptation to the glacial climates of northwestern Eurasia, they disappeared abruptly between 30,000 and 40,000 years ago, to be replaced by populations all but identical to modern humans. Recent research suggests that the roots of this dramatic population replacement can be traced far back to events on another continent, with the appearance of distinctively modern human remains and artefacts in eastern and southern Africa.

Publication types

  • Historical Article
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Africa
  • Animals
  • Archaeology
  • Emigration and Immigration / history*
  • Europe
  • Geography
  • History, Ancient
  • Hominidae / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Phylogeny
  • Population Dynamics*
  • Time Factors