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  Ancient tools prove cavemen were clever
Updated 07 November 2001, 19.08
Cavemen may have cleverer than we thought
Top scientists think cavemen may have been much more advanced than we thought.

They discovered that cavemen were making and using tools thousands of years before people thought they were.

Fact File
Evolution of man
Homo habilis
2.2m-1.6m years ago

Homo erectus
2m-0.4m years ago
Homo sapiens
0.4m-0.2m years ago

Neanderthal man
0.2m-30,000 years ago
Modern man
130,000 years ago to present

At a dig in South Africa, scientists dug up tools made of bone and sharpened pieces of rock that could have been there more than 70,000 years ago.

Scientists have known for a long time that the bodies of ancient man were similar to modern man, but have struggled to prove how clever people were.

More exciting news to come

This new find means that man was making tools some 35,000 years earlier than they thought, and means ancient man may have been much more intelligent.

And there may be more exciting news to come, because lots of Africa hasn't been investigated by scientists, so there could be lots of other exciting things still buried.

The main image on this page comes from the BBC's forthcoming TV series Walking With Beasts.

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