How old is mankind?


Quick Answer

Anatomically modern humans, Homo sapiens sapiens, are a 150,000-year-old subspecies responsible for the entirety of recorded history and civilization. The human species, Homo sapiens, is currently believed to date back nearly 200,000 years.

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Full Answer

The age of mankind depends on how the group is defined. Palaeontologists classify the genus Homo as all primates closely related to modern humans. During 4 million years of evolution, various species made advancements that brought the genus closer to modern conceptions of "mankind." Homo habilis (2.4 million to 1.4 million years ago) was the first known species to make wide use of tools. Homo heidelbergensis (700,000 to 200,000 years ago) is believed to have been very social and to have shared resources and shelter in a family setting.

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